Part 2 – 21st to 28th February 2016
Welcome to Part II of our Pro Cycle Team special a focus on a group training week that took place during this February. To recap, six years ago Pro Cycle Hire Mallorca decided to create it’s own dedicated racing team by electing a mixture of young riders from the UK. The challenge was to help support the next generation of riders from the UK in a small way via the business here in Mallorca. The team, made up of a number of 1st, 2nd and 3rd category riders, now compete in the Pro Cycle Hire colour’s most weekends throughout the BC Eastern Road Race League season. Road races take place in Essex, Hertfordshire, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. If you are around please go along and support them or watch out for more news and results via the leagues website and our newsletters.
Day 4 – Wednesday 24th February
It was a beautiful warm sunny day awaiting us as we set out on today’s training ride.
Joe and Andrew departed leaving nine of the team to do a slightly shorter ride today, but with the objective of some higher intensity efforts during the ride. We headed out to Sinue via Muro to the outdoor velodrome. There was a need for speed today!
We arranged a 6-man team pursuit, with each rider doing a 1 lap turn on the front for a fast 20 minute session at 27/28mph. The legs were burning by the time we sprinted the last lap.
Through and off on the way home via Sa Pobla with a big sprint finish into Alcudia contested by Will and Dan C, then a nice cafe lunch before heading back to the hotel. We ended up on 3hrs, approx 60 miles and felt like a good session with some speed work in the legs on top of the endurance rides we’d already completed this week.
Day 5 – Thursday 25th February
This was a recovery day so we had a much later start and it was nice to not have to rush around too much and get going too early.
We left at 11am and rode to a couple of local bike shops in Alcudia to have a look round, then split into two groups, one did a short inland loop to Port de Pollenca, the other took the direct route on the bike path round the bay! We regrouped at the Pro Cycle Cafe for coffees and lunch. We spent an hour or so sitting in the sun, chilling out and resting the legs so we would feel fresh again from tomorrow onwards.
It gave us the chance to discuss bikes and the merits of the Colnago Evo bikes we had been loaned by Pro Cycle Hire for the week. Everyone agreed they were really comfortable to ride and well suited to the demands of the varied terrain in Mallorca. Whilst climbing, descending, sprinting or fast riding on rolling roads they did the job really well!
After riding back round the bay to Alcudia the total ride time was approx 1.5hrs, average speed was really low, but it was just what we needed to make sure we didn’t stop completely but allowed our legs to recover from the hard previous few days.
Day 6 – Friday 26th February
This was the Queen’s stage of the week, a good 5+ hour ride with a couple of long climbs thrown in over the well-known ascents of Lluc and then Soller.
There was an air of anticipation at breakfast and everyone needed to be ready and out by 9.30am so organisation was key. We got a big breakfast on board then all rolled off on time. The sun was out and the temperature was getting warmer, but still a little fresh first thing, so our team arm warmers and gilets were initially required.
We rolled over the 7km climb to Lluc with a split in the group and a few riding in the ‘bus’ nursing colds and bugs. We regrouped at the top, we definitely weren’t tempted to ride down and back up the famous Team Sky test climb of Sa Calobra as the weather had changed and was becoming colder and more cloudy in the mountains.
The road continues up another long, steady climb to the Soller road tunnel high above, before a nice long, smooth, fast descent to the town below. We then headed back out of Soller tackling the 6km twisting hairpin climb before descending the long road to Bunyola.
After approx 3hrs we stopped to raid a supermarket in Bunyola as this was a no cafe stop ride. Once out of Bunyola after stocking up on drinks and cakes we had a nice, fast 1.5hr ride back across the flat plains to Alcudia. Of course as soon as we were onto the main roads via Inca and Sa Pobla we started a well drilled through and off session, pressing on the pedals at 29/30mph for a good 45 mins back to Alcudia.
Matt and Mark 2 decided to ride round the bay to Port de Pollenca and back to get a extra few miles in and rack up 100 miles for the day. All in all it was a great day, a great route, nice long climbs and fast roads back. Sweet!
Day 7 – Saturday 27th February
This was our last day of training camp and the weather forecast all week had been rain showers all day. Every breakfast consisted of getting lots of food on board plus discussions on the day’s weather and what kit to wear. This morning was no different except rather surprisingly the overnight showers had eased off and at 9.00am it looked like the morning was going to be dry! A hasty change of plans meant that we could get a longer ride in, although on the last day we needed to be careful not to overdo it and undo all the good work we had done during the week by getting carried away and pushing already tired bodies.
We headed out through Alcudia, along the road through the reeds in the direction of Muro and although we had been blessed with dry weather this had been traded for a 40mph headwind which made the going quite tough. Once through Muro and on our way back towards the coast from Santa Margalida the route became more wind assisted and made life much easier again.
Some of the team turned off early but a few of us continued through Alcudia to Port de Pollenca and up the climb to Formentor for one final 7km threshold effort. We regrouped at the cafe for lunch before cruising back round the bay to the hotel. The total ride was approx 2.5 hours and 45 miles.
We arranged to drop the bikes back to Pro Cycle Hire and then spent the afternoon watching the Het Nieuwsblad semi-classic from the comfort of the Pro Cycle Cafe. We bid our farewells and said a big thank you to Bruce, we’d been very generously looked after and the Colnago bikes that Bruce had arranged for us had all performed brilliantly!
All we need to do now is repay Bruce’s generosity with a great season’s racing results!!
The week in numbers
Sunday February 21st
Alcudia – Pollenca – Formentor – Alcudia (60 kms)
Monday February 22nd
Alcudia – Pollenca – San Salvador – Alcudia (135 kms)
Tuesday February 23rd
Alcudia – Pollenca – Selva – Bunyola – Alcudia (145 kms)
Wednesday February 24th
Alcudia – Muro – Sinue – Alcudia (95 kms)
Thursday February 25th
Alcudia – Pollenca – Alcudia (40 kms)
Friday February 26th
Alcudia – Pollenca – Lluc – Soller – Bunyola – Alcudia (160 kms)
Saturday February 27th
Alcudia – Muro – Margalida – Alcudia – Pollenca – Formentor
Alcudia (75 kms)
Approx 22hrs riding – Over 420 miles covered
Collectively about 350,000 calories worth of energy used by the riders during training week.