New training ground for six of the team’s riders.
João Almeida, Andrea Bagioli, Davide Ballerini, Ian Garrison, Alvaro Hodeg and Pieter Serry are currently in Greece for a training camp under the guidance of trainer and multiple Greek national champion Vasilis Anastopoulos and will spend a total of eleven days in the Loutraki area, a coastal town on the Gulf of Corinth, where training conditions are perfect according to Anastopoulos.
“It really is an ideal place for training. The roads are good and with very little traffic. That’s a big advantage. It’s also a quiet area. Moreover, the weather conditions are excellent, we have sunny weather with temperatures between 16 and 23 degrees.”
Deceuninck - Quick-Step are the first World Tour team that have traveled to Greece for a training camp. With the gap that has opened up in the team’s calendar, a unique opportunity to explore new horizons has presented itself, says Anastopoulos: “It’s only appropriate for an international team like ours to discover new places and less known cycling countries. So, we decided to stage a training camp in Greece for the first time in the team’s history.”
Having organized multiple camps in the area with his former team, Anastopoulos sees nothing but benefits for the six riders joining him in his homeland. “I know all the roads and their data. It really is an ideal place for training. You can find everything in the region, a variety of flat roads but also hills and climbs. In one of the coming days we’ll go from sea level to 1300 meters altitude.”
It goes without saying that six riders with different profiles and season goals require a different training approach. “We have prepared a mixed program for our riders. Some days we will work on flat sections with Alvaro and Davide. Some other days we’ll put to work our climbers, who are preparing the Volta a Catalunya, while the other guys are preparing for Nokere Koerse. Almeida has just come back from injury so we’ll take it easy with him in these first few days. But they are all excited to discover Greece and a different training ground. It’s something new for them. Of course, me being a local I know the country and the language, so that helps a lot. Another big advantage is the presence of two of our main technical partners, Specialized and Shimano, through their local distributors, and the photographers of MBike, who are joining us during the training rides. Shimano Greece will provide us with a technical support car during our stay in Loutraki, a huge help”, concluded Anastopoulos.
Photo credit: ©MBike/Petros Gkotsis