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Team Milram's riders prepare for the Tour Down Under in Australia
Training camp on Cyprus for later starters
Like so many teams, Team Milram is sending its riders in various directions at the moment. Sprinter Robert Förster is leading the team in its season opener in the Tour Down Under, while another batch of riders are enjoying balmy temperatures on the island of Cyprus.
Sprinters Förster and Wim Stroetinga will look for the team's first win in Australia. Last year Stroetinga finished second in the opening criterium.
The seven riders from the German ProTour team have been training Down Under for over a week now. "With temperatures around 25 degrees Celsius and outstanding logistics, organisation and accommodations, we have optimal conditions here," said Milram Directeur Sportif Vittorio Algeri,
"We have trained well and looked at some of the important parts of the course," Algeri said. The team has check out not only Willunga Hill, which will be featured in the fifth stage, as well as the shorter climbs in the third and fourth stages.
Most importantly, the team has been working on its sprints. "The sprint lead-out. which we have practised so far, is quite good. Wim and 'Frösi' are getting better in form every day, so that we are really looking forward to how it will work out in the race," said Algeri.
Halfway across the world, five Milram riders have been training on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus for the first time. Christian Knees, Fabian Wegmann, Johannes Fröhlinger, Matthias Russ and Paul Voss will end their two-training camp there this coming week.
"Training on Cyprus is a nice change from our usual places," said Wegmann. "Everything is good here, especially the weather – it is about 10 degrees warmer than on Majorca, for example. The training conditions are perfect, some of the roads are brand new and you can ride for hours and barely see a car."
"The weather here is better than expected," said Milram's Johannes Fröhlinger. "With temperatures up to 24 degrees Celsius, we can even ride in short pants and short-sleeved jerseys."
The Germans are accompanied on their rides by a cycling guide supplied by the Cyprus Tourism Organisation, who helps them pick the best and safest route.