Russian team training in Mallorca
"We're like a new team," declared Denis Galimzyanov as he sat down with Cyclingnews on a rare rest day at the Team Katusha camp in Mallorca, Spain.
The powerhouse sprinter may well have a point. After three years Katusha's Andre Tchmil handed over the reins to German school teacher Hans-Michael Holczer, the man who led Gerolsteiner until their demise. Holczer has drafted in new blood both on the athlete side as well as the management, handing picking a number of former colleagues as well as cherry picking the likes of Michael Rich and Torsten Schmidt. Valerio Piva, from HTC, was added earlier by Tchmil and the new structure has apparently improved spirits within the Russian team.
Galimzyanov was keen to stress that Tchmil had done much for his career, but pointed to elements of organisation and equipment that had let the team down in previous years. Holczer refrained from pointing holes in the previous system but told Cyclingnews that he had overseen an overhaul of the old structure, and brought in a number of new elements, including a long-term partnership with Canyon.
See a photo gallery from the team training camp.