Majorca - March 2003 Training Camp
Alcudia, Majorca Spain - March 24th - 31st
Tuesday morning - the sun was shining, it was warm and the light wind blowing was also warm. We went out to the bike storage room early - eager to get going. LLL was on his balcony early - applying sun cream and taking in the early morning sun.
storage area was usually the hotel's supermarket. The shelves had been cleared
and rows of bike storage hooks put up about 2metres off the ground - about 100
bikes hung vertically and their carry cases / bags could easily be stored in
here. It was a great setup. At the front of the hotel in a shop unit was a bike
spares and clothing shop with mechanic. Brilliant!
People drifted down to the bike area, got their bikes out and then variously sat in the sun, stood around chatting or riding in long, slow circles waiting for 10:00am. Most were there and ready before 10:00am, the last person joined us at 09:59am - it was Davy. However, training camp organiser himself was ready to go within a minute and the run left on time.
off together; the idea being that the ride would split about 10km-15km from
base. The pace was good, although not fierce, but for some it was a relief when
the shorter, alternative, run turned right off the main road and left the
fitter, faster riders to it. I was one of them - feeling fit and healthy, but
concerned whether I could have kept that pace up all day.
There were 4 of us in the alternative group. Davy was leading - he had been out in Majorca for the whole of the week before - riding with Martin and the pair had clocked up over 500 miles. Davy had also picked up a throat infection (it did make his voice sound very husky.....) and wanted o take it easy. Mervyn was also there - a regular club run rider but someone who had stopped racing a few years ago. I was number three. And then there was Scout! As soon as we turned off the main road, the slope increased. Scout immediately overtook the rest of us and went up-ahead for a look. Mervyn turned and said to me "that's why we call him Scout" - up ahead and back behind on 'scouting' missions.
We ambled out
through the back roads to Sineu. (It was to be a last day observation by Deb
"all roads lead to Sineu" - well road signs all point there anyway).
Sineu is a popular cycling stop-off. There were hundreds of cyclists around and
many sitting in the main square, which we found without difficulty. Davy had
dropped off the back just before the village to answer his phone. So Mervyn,
Scout and I went into the village, up the hill, turned left and found the main
square. "This isn't the right one - we should be in a square nearer the
church" - according to Scout. We sat tight for a few minutes; sure that
Davy would catch up. He didn't. Mervyn went off to look for him and/or the
'other' square. No joy. We stood some more in anticipation of Davy riding down
the hill to save us. He didn't. I suddenly remembered that I had Davy's mobile
number in my own phone. I called it. No answer. Tried again - success.
about you Corri?"
about you? Where are you?"
a square too - lower down in the village - it seems like the main square"
route did you take in the village?"
I described our
journey within Sineu. Whilst I was speaking, Scout, sure he knew where to go
went off on 'an exploratory'. Davy didn't know where we were but said he'd come
to find us. Scout returned from the opposite direction he'd set off in, no luck.
Davy didn't appear. A few minutes passed, still no Davy. Mervyn grew impatient
and set his bike against a wall - he was going to get a coffee in this square.
Scout went off again. I followed Mervyn, ready to lean my bike and sit down,
suddenly, Scout and Davy appeared - "Hey, this way...." We gathered
ourselves and followed them up the hill, through some narrow alleyways and into
the square near the church. It was beautiful and full of cyclists. Davy leaned
his bike against a wall and sat down to his half-drunk coffee (no wonder it took
him so long to find us). We joined him and spent a pleasant 1/2-hour in the
square at Sineu.
The ride back
was uneventful. There was a stop for a mechanical - Scout's seatpost had slipped
down into the frame. We rolled in via Llubi and Sa Pablo - the roads were good,
it was warm, although the wind did pick up a bit around midday and the ride was
fun. Just before Alcudia, on the road from Sa Pablo, the road goes through
wetlands. Either side are ditches and instead of the normal agricultural fields,
the roads are surrounded by huge, 2m-3m rushes. It was here that Scout decided
to go for a "long 'un" for the roundabout sprint.
He went far too
early, I went too – anxious not to miss out on some play racing. However, we
both ran out of steam and sat down in a truce. Davy and Mervyn were well behind
and we rode on at our own pace towards the roundabout. Suddenly, out of the blue
and like a train, Mervyn passed us. Perfect timing and with the element of
surprise – Mervyn won the sprint. Round one to him!
Distance done, 52 miles. A great day in Majorca again. We got back to the hotel and stowed the bikes. After a long shower and a lie-down, it was time for a debrief and general banter on Deb’s balcony. As the week went on, the crowd before dinner got bigger. But on Tuesday night, there were just a few of us to see the beautiful sunset.
The other group did their longer
ride. They got back about an hour and a half after us. However, with all roads
leading to Sineu, they couldn't help themselves but stop there for lunch. There
are two sets of photos from this training camp - one set WomensCycling.net's,
the other set was taken by "Toby" - Paul Watson. His lunch pictures
are below. Oh, and by the way, you could imagine that there were doulbe the
number of people on this trip - it seemed like everyone had at least one
nickname and all the names were used seamlessly!
|Toby!!!!||On the way to Sineu||Lunch at Sineu||More lunch|
breakfast were both buffet format – excellent food and as much as you could
eat. We took our fill and then the group drifted off; some went for walks,
others to watch TV in their rooms, others for a pint in the bar. Again, it was a
case of early to bed. Wednesday was to be longer in the saddle than