By Shane Stokes
On Thursday, several members of the T-Mobile women's squad will fly to Australia, following what was a well organised training camp in Mallorca. Double world cup winner Oenone Wood, Alexis Rhodes, Katherine Bates and Linda Villumsen will head directly, while Ina Yoko Teutenberg will return to Germany on Saturday and then fly south the following day.
Villumsen plans to go to New Zealand and add more kilometres there, while the others will build on their Mallorcan base by training in Australia. They will regroup towards the end of February and, together with Judith Arndt, will compete in the Geelong Tour from February 27 until March 1. The women's world cup race will then follow on March 3.
Directeur sportif Anna Wilson said that there are no plans to ramp up the intensity as yet. "They are mostly building their endurance from now until Geelong, doing the same type of long, low heartrate rides that they have been doing here," she stated. "They will probably do a couple of club races a couple of weeks beforehand. They will then use the Tour as a bit of intensity loading before the world cup.
"We are hoping to win both events but if we had to choose, we'd take the world cup."
Former top pro Wilson had been working as a lawyer but jumped at the chance to join the team management this season. She is pleased with things thus far. "I think the camp went really well. I had a very busy time off the bike, while the girls trained well. For some the training wasnt perhaps as good as we might have hoped beforehand because they have been sick, but the most important thing was to come together and have a good feeling amongst the team."