With racing already well underway for some of the team, Nils Eekhoff sat down after a training ride from the peace and quiet at our altitude Team Camp on Mount Teide and put pen to paper, talking about those final season preparations and his love for the classics…
I had a really good and long off season actually. It was super nice to be able to spend a lot of days at home and I had a good time with my family. I also went on vacation with my girlfriend to Curacao which was really nice, and it was good to escape the Dutch winter weather.
At the start of the year we headed to Team Camp in Calpe and it was good to catch up with the guys again. It was also a good opportunity to be there with the whole team and get to know some of the new faces we have, just spend some time with each other off the bike. Of course the training itself was really good too and we had a lot of nice days on the bike together as a group, getting in those base miles and building things back up in terms of our shape.
Towards the start of February I packed my bags and headed to the volcano and Mount Teide, to spend some time at altitude with the guys. John and I were there from our classics group and we also shared some of our time there with Andreas, Thymen and Romain from the GC group.
We also watched a lot of the winter Olympics together and it was a typical morning routine while we all enjoyed our breakfast before heading out on the road, although there was some competitive rivalry between us all rooting for own countries. Overall the training went well and I’m looking forward to what is coming up – the classics.
I’m looking forward and feel ready for the first races, but of course there are always some nerves, but I think that’s a good thing. The classics themselves for me are mostly about the iconic climbs such as the Muur, or the famous cobbled sections such as Arenberg.
The races are just incredible to be a part of as well, with the fans and the electric atmosphere they also help to create. While on the road we are all battling like warriors and fighting for every part of the road, all trying to get in the best position to get the best result we can. It is just special and I love to fight for good results in those races with the team.
I hope you all enjoy watching them as much as I enjoy riding them!
Until next time, Nils.