2012 Team MTN/Qhubeka Training Camp

Photo: Craig Dutton

The Team Training Camp was held in Nelspruit this year as this will be the location of the SA Road and Time Trial Championships. The plan was to train hard, spend time to get to know each other, do photos with the team and to have fun.

We all met Monday morning at MTN Head Office and headed off to Nelspruit. We arrived, checked the room list, found our rooms and got ready for a short pedal to loosen the legs after our drive. I also had time to get a quick massage in. Serious training would begin from day 2…

Tuesday saw the team breaking into various groups according to what the riders race programs and goals were. For some, including me, it would be a double session with hard intervals in the morning and a steady loop with photos in the afternoon.

Over the week we would all get a chance to meet and get to know our European Director Jens Zemke, tonight was my turn. Jens is a fantastic person with great knowledge and experience to help us get to the next level, Pro-Continental.

Day 3 was the hardest day for me and I think for many riders. The terrain in Nelspruit and the heat, together with a motivated group of individuals meant that training was going to be tough and challenging. The men’s team went through 25L of PVM Octane and 35L of water and burnt over 4000kj. It’s great to have all the riders on the same page with regards to where we want this team to be and there is a great vibe during training and around the dinner table.

Thursday was the SA route recon, and although we were feeling the effects of the last two days there would be no soft pedalling. We challenge each other in everything we do to become better on and off the bike. We were also kept busy by Craig Dutton who took some fantastic photos of

Photo: Craig Dutton

us. I can’t wait to see the full album.

Friday was our final day and consisted of an easy ride then the drive back to MTN Fairlands. The team, including all the staff, was a real unit throughout this training camp and everyone did what they needed to do and more.

Over my last 5 years with the team, I have to say that this was the most professional training camp we have had and that our sights are truly set on the next level!

End of Season Catch Up

Jayco Herald Suntour 2011

The team had a busy final two months of the season with travels to the Jayco Herald Suntour in Australia and the Tour of Hainan in China. We also had two very important races upon our return to South Africa from our international tours.

 

The Jayco Herald Suntour was a great experience with some extremely tough sections. There were some strong teams represented including Saxo Bank Sunguard and Garmin Cervelo. The team worked really well together and gave 110%. We achieved great results with Reinardt Janse van Rensburg taking a stage and finishing 4th overall.

 

The Tour of Hainan was a little less controlled than Australia which produced some unpredictable racing. This meant that we had to be present in all the moves which proved to be difficult and made the tour very challenging. We remained however a strong unit amongst other well-known teams such as Saxo Bank Sunguard and Skil-Shimano. We finished 2nd overall in the tour with Reinie.

 

We returned to South Africa with some good racing in our legs and a great confidence for our final two races of the year being the MTN OFM Classic in Bloemfontein and the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge in Johannesburg. These were important local races on our calendar for our sponsors. We managed to win both races with careful planning and great team work. Reinardt taking the OFM and Arran Brown winning the 94.7.

It feels great to end the season off on a high by winning the final race of the year. It makes our 3 week break that much sweeter.

 

2012 Planning

The team is currently busy with 2012 planning and bike fits. Planning and goal setting is one of many important key factors in the team’s success.

 

Will post again soon…

 

 

Clarens Club100 Training Camp

Arran Brown and myself were invited to join the Club100 Clarens Training Camp to represent the MTN/Qhubeka Professional Cycling Team. We were both looking forward to the weekend and it was no let down, we really enjoyed ourselves and had plenty of fun.

We arrived on the Friday and the turn out for this camp was incredible. Riding and spending time with the club was a pleasurable experience, we shared many laughs and interesting conversations.

I was taken aback by how much the club supported our MTN/Qhubeka Team and all of our bold goals for the future. Spending the weekend with these riders made me feel rather special and I was reminded of what an amazing sport cycling is.

Thank you to all who attended this camp for making it such an enjoyable weekend! I’m already looking forward to the next one!

Clarens Club100 Training Camp