Sunday, January 22, 2012

To Train in Spain

As I peruse the cycling websites on a nearly daily basis (just like you do...admit it), I get a little jog down memory lane when I see the articles and pics of pro teams training in Spain.  I never paid much attention to these articles/pics until I ended up in the Costa Blanca region of Spain a few years back.   This year has been a lot of memory lane trips as the camps for the pro have recently included numerous Costa Blanca locations:
  • RadioShack-Nissan in Calpe
  • Vacansoleil in Benidorm
  • Astana in Calpe
  • BMC in Denia
  • Garmin-Barracuda in Calpe
I ended up in Albir (located between Benidorm and Altea ) at a low key resort just a short walk off the ocean.  The area was advertised as a cyclists training mecca...warm weather, great roads and varied terrain.  I rode everyday for 2 weeks straight .. sometimes with a group of others (mostly from the U.K.) or sometimes just solo.  The riding was quite amazing as you'd imagine with varied cyclist all over the place.  The acceptance of cyclists on the road surprised me as a paceline of 12 riders could occupy a lane of a major street city street (similar to an Erie Blvd) without being run off the road or cursed out.  A bonus while I was there was a second tier pro race started in Benidorm where we got to see a handful of top pros including Oscar Friere, some Postal/Discovery guys. 

So now seeing pics of the pros in Calpe, Benidorm, Denia, etc. makes me long to get back there and ride.  Almost every ride I/we did while I was there went through Calpe or Benidorm or Denia as they were only a few miles in either direction and were the main routes to get up into the mountains.

I know this winter has been rather nice to us thus far but short sleeves and shorts are sure beginning to sound nice about now.   Spain anyone?

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