Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling just finished its first race of the season, Tour de San Luis in sunny Argentina. Overall it went quite well. The warm weather and great stages allowed us to get some of that race rhythm that is difficult to simulate in training. As always, the first couple days you feel like you are missing that "souplesse" you remember from the end of the previous season, when the pedals just seemed to turn themselves, but by the end you again feel like a racer rather than just a rider.
For myself, the majority of the Tour was spent in the breakaways, and I managed to get myself in there on four of the six road stages. Pressing on in each one to push the body to newer thresholds and seeing where my limit was at for the early season.
The trip to Argentina was an adventure to say the least, and I ended up traveling over 60 hours with my fellow team mate Andrew Pinfold. Lay overs, delays, canceled flights, missing baggage; but misery loves company, and we were able to really catch up after what has been a few years since riding together on our former Symmetrics team.
Just as I am traveling back from Argentina my mind is already getting prepared for the team training camp in California, which is only a week away now. From there its off to our European home in Girona for a solid spring schedule ahead of the team's first major goal of the season, the Tour of California. I'm looking forward to getting back to Spain, grabbing my fresh bread on the way home from each ride, catching up with friends and hopefully more sunny weather.
Starting in February I will be working with the great people at F *#@$ Cancer (www.letsfcancer.com) on an awareness campaign. Every month, or every large bike race, I will be racing with a name of a person on my bike who is suffering, or has passed away due to cancer. My first cancer F'r is a young man by the name of Alex Balfour who last July was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic lymphoma at the age of 12. An avid mountain biker, he continues to courageously battle valiantly against this horrible disease, a true inspiration and champion to us all.
Thanks for reading,