For U23/Elite riders in Spain, this is the easiest time of the season. With racing starting in 3 weeks, it is not difficult to motivate for training rides which fly by when using new kit and bikes. The start to my season will be made easier thanks to the help of OTE sports who will be sponsoring me with sports nutrition products, so a big thanks to them.

 

 

Riders are full of optimism and excited about what the year has in store, without any pressure of having to prove their ability in the immediate future. While the excitement of racing may come largely from the fact that riders tend to forget just how hard it is, it does make for a great atmosphere in the team.  

 

 

In the case of Eiser Hirumet, my team for 2018, both riders and team staff couldn’t wait to get going with the team camp last weekend. On Friday we traveled from Durango to Santoña where we stayed in a hostel.  We were with the Junior team who, along with Eiser Hirumet and the professional women’s team Bizkaia Durango, are run by the clubs Duranguesa and Getxo. We had some big training rides planned in the Ason natural park in Cantabria, but the weekend was also about bringing the teams together. Over the 3 days we had group meetings which were an opportunity for the management to explain about the project.

 

 

It’s been two years since Duranguesa and Getxo joined to create Eiser Hirumet, which has since gown to a 20 rider team and will be running a double calendar offering almost 60 race days from February to September. The sponsors and management are keen for Eiser to remain an extension of the parent clubs. They made clear importance of helping out with the local junior and U16 riders, being social with training rides around Durango, and doing our bit to portray the best image of the club.

 

 

On Saturday we did some good team time trial efforts but Sunday’s ride was the big one, we went from the coast inland to the famous climbs of Ason and La Sia, accumulating almost 3000m of climbing over the 5 hours.

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David Blythe, a young filmmaker based in the Basque country, came along for the final day. Leaning out of the car window and filming from the boot, David worked almost as hard as we did! David’s film of the camp will be available in time for the team presentation on the 23rd of February. His most recent work was a video with a teammate of mine, Julen Latorre, which is well worth a watch. If our team video is anything like that we’ll be in for a treat.

Looking ahead, we have a few more team training days planned before it all kicks off for the team at the Euskaldun race in Zumaia and the Copa Espana in Don Benito on the 24th and 25th of February.

OTE sports: https://www.otesports.co.uk/

David’s Instagram: @davidblythfilms

Photos:

David Blythe

Eiser Hirumet Team