Danilo Hondo has different ways to avoid the winter weather
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Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Danilo Hondo has different ways to avoid the winter weather

by Ben Atkins at 1:54 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Track
 
Racing indoors or winter sunshine for Lampre-Farnese Vini’s German sprinter

danilo hondoDanilo Hondo, Lampre-Farnese Vini’s Italian named, Swiss resident, German sprinter has found several ways to avoid riding in the cold conditions in Europe this winter. He has spent his time either racing indoors in the Six-Day races on the track, or travelling off to sunnier climes to take in some warm training kilometres.

Having just won the Zurich Six with veteran German partner Robert Bartko, Hondo is now jetting off the the West coast of the USA to escape the snow back home.

"I'm on my way to Malibù,” he said, “where my teammates Alessandro Petacchi and Manuele Mori are waiting for me; they’ve already reached California".

The reason the three blue-fuchsia riders chose the USA for their winter training camp is a simple one. “Because we wanted to train in warm weather and avoid the cold European winter,” he explained. “We rented a flat on the seashore: it will be our headquarters from where we'll start our training. We'll fly back to Europe just before Christmas.”

Other than his current trip to the sun, the German has taken other steps this year to avoid the cold weather. “At the end of October I was in Curacao in order to take part, with Petacchi and [Matteo] Bono, in the Amstel Curacao Race. Then, when I came back to Europe, I focused my attention in the indoor activity of the track".

“I think I obtained very good results.” he said of his time on the boards so far this winter. “I took part in two Six Days races, with Robert Bartko as partner; we took third place in Ghent, while in Zurich we won!

“It was something outstanding,” he said of his Zurich victory, “after hard fights and long nights. It was also beautiful giving importance to our sponsor Lampre, to the other sponsor Samsung, and to the very good technical material supplied by Wilier; especially the Velodromo Carbon, one of the new bikes in the 2011 Track Collection.”

Although being mosst famous as a road rider, Hondo began racing on the track many years ago, but gave it up when he turned professional. "I began to ride on track as an amateur,” he explained, “winning the the World Championship title in the team pursuit. Then, when I became a road pro, I didn't race anymore on track, but three years ago I start again to training on track.

“At the beginning I had to find the feeling,” he added, “riding on the track is totally different, but now I had very good feelings.”

While a useful diversion, Hondo hopes that his winter track racing season will stand him in good stead when the road season begins. “Certainly,” he said, “this is especially with regards to activity on the track. Taking part in Six Days events is a good way to train in a stimulating way and it's very useful in from the point of view of improving the cycling technique.”

Hondo began his season at the end of January this year and took a stage win in the Giro di Sardegna in late February, before spending most of the rest of the year in the service of Petacchi. If his track racing and sunny training have the effect that he hopes he will likely start 2011 in even better fashion.

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