At the end of 2017, we were given behind-the-scenes access to Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka’s first off-season training camp in Cape Town, South Africa. Now we’re sharing this rare access with you through a series of four features, providing an insight into the team’s preparations for the season, from riding with the squad and social media training, to medical check-ups and the arrival of new kit. First, we’re clipping in with the team under the South African sun.
It seems there are a lot of different perceptions about how pros ride, going by the questions I get asked after trips such as this one. Are they super-fast all the time, or do they ride steady and save themselves for the serious training efforts? Can they enjoy their riding or are they especially cautious to avoid accidents and injuries? Do they ever just do a chilled ride to a coffee shop?
Happily, over the course of a week riding with Dimension Data for Qhubeka in South Africa, I was able to discover the answers to all of those questions first hand.
Let’s start with the easy one – most pros love coffee and their recovery rides are as important as the savage interval sessions. Total rest days are rare because active recovery is more effective, so a barely-touching-the-pedals spin, maybe 16 or 17mph average, to a coffee shop is ideal to freshen the legs.