Skip to main content

EF Education First-Drapac show off their new colours at Girona camp - Gallery

Image 1 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac riders get in the kilometres

The EF Education First-Drapac riders get in the kilometres
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 2 of 34

Swedish national champion Kim Magnusson (EF Education First-Drapac)

Swedish national champion Kim Magnusson (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 3 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac riders get ready to roll

The EF Education First-Drapac riders get ready to roll
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 4 of 34

Matti Breschel (EF Education First-Drapac)

Matti Breschel (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 5 of 34

Dan McLay (EF Education First-Drapac)

Dan McLay (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 6 of 34

Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First-Drapac)

Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 7 of 34

Riders dila in their time trial positions

Riders dila in their time trial positions
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 8 of 34

Pierre Rolland ans Rigoberto Uran share a joke

Pierre Rolland ans Rigoberto Uran share a joke
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 9 of 34

Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac)

Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 10 of 34

Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac)

Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 11 of 34

Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac)

Michael Woods (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 12 of 34

EF Education First-Drapac out in the woods

EF Education First-Drapac out in the woods
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 13 of 34

EF Education First-Drapac pose for their official team photo

EF Education First-Drapac pose for their official team photo
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 14 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac Australians

The EF Education First-Drapac Australians
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 15 of 34

The riders did some efforts on the climb near the coast

The riders did some efforts on the climb near the coast
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 16 of 34

The views near Girona are impressive

The views near Girona are impressive
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 17 of 34

Hugh Carthy (EF Education First-Drapac)

Hugh Carthy (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 18 of 34

Video time for Dan McLay

Video time for Dan McLay
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 19 of 34

Sep Vanmarcke does some testing during his ride

Sep Vanmarcke does some testing during his ride
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 20 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac team will again be on Cannondale bikes

The EF Education First-Drapac team will again be on Cannondale bikes
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 21 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac do some stretching before their ride

The EF Education First-Drapac do some stretching before their ride
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 22 of 34

Some end of the day speed work behind the car

Some end of the day speed work behind the car
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 23 of 34

EF Education First-Drapac hit he roads near Girona

EF Education First-Drapac hit he roads near Girona
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 24 of 34

There was also time for a coffee break

There was also time for a coffee break
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 25 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac riders study their race programme

The EF Education First-Drapac riders study their race programme
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 26 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac riders take a turn on the track

The EF Education First-Drapac riders take a turn on the track
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 27 of 34

It's time to get serious

It's time to get serious
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 28 of 34

Alex Howes (EF Education First-Drapac)

Alex Howes (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 29 of 34

Taylor Phinney (EF Education First-Drapac)

Taylor Phinney (EF Education First-Drapac)
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 30 of 34

The EF Education First-Drapac team car will stand out in the convoy

The EF Education First-Drapac team car will stand out in the convoy
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 31 of 34

Team manager Jonathan Vaughters speaks to the riders

Team manager Jonathan Vaughters speaks to the riders
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 32 of 34

The complete 2018 EF Education First-Drapac squad

The complete 2018 EF Education First-Drapac squad
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 33 of 34

The riders listen to a pre-ride brief

The riders listen to a pre-ride brief
(Image credit: EF Education First-Drapac)
Image 34 of 34

The riders hit the climbs

The riders hit the climbs
(Image credit: Ian Walton/EF Education First-Drapac)

While other WorldTour teams have continued to compete around the globe following the Tour Down Under, the EF-Education First-Drapac team gathered at their European base in Girona, Spain for a get together before beginning their multiple race programmes.

The riders clocked up some final training rides but also spent time on a nearby motor racing circuit, working on the lead-out trains for new sprinters Sacha Modolo and Dan McLay, and dialing in their time trial positions. The riders wore their bright orange training kit and their pink race kit as they also posed for official photographs and enjoyed time together before the season turns serious.

EF Education First stepped in to become the new title sponsor of the team after an expected €7 million sponsor backed out during the summer, saving the team from the risk of closure and sparking a new chapter in its history under Jonathan Vaughters’ management.

Rigoberto Uran and Michael Woods will share team leadership at EF Education First-Drapac in the Grand Tours and stage races in 2018, with Uran heading back to the Tour de France after finishing second behind Chris Froome in 2017. Woods will target the Giro d’Italia after showing his Grand Tour credentials with seventh overall at the Vuelta a Espana.

Sep Vanmarcke leads the Classics squad, with Matti Breschel and Mitch Docker signed to help him on the cobbles.

EF Education First-Drapac lost Davide Formolo, Alberto Bettiol, Dylan Van Baarle and Davide Villella, but they hope to secure success in the sprints after signing McLay and Modolo, and building lead-out trains to help them. The US core of the team remains, with Taylor Phinney, Lawson Craddock, Nate Brown, Alex Howes, Joe Dombrowski joined by the talented Logan Owen, who made a solid debut at the Tour Down Under.

Getting the juices flowing

Vaughters explained that the camp is important because it is the only time the team will all be together. He prefers to call the get together an organizational camp rather than a training camp, pointing out that the “training a rider does to truly achieve fitness and win races is done at home, on their own, or in small and invisible camps with a few teammates. Not at the big 'all team gaggle' each team has mid-winter.”

“Pro cycling is a funny beast in the modern era: constantly in motion as we are doing 240 race days a year on multiple continents,” Vaughters explained in his blog on the team’s website.

“This leaves almost zero opportunity to actually talk to one another. A rider doing the cobbled classics and the Vuelta schedule might not ever do a single day of racing with a rider doing an Ardennes Classics and Tour de France. They’ll be on the same team, but never actually speak. That’s always seemed a bit sad to me.

“The camp is also a chance for me, the manager, and all the directors to observe how riders interact with one another and how a diverse staff comes together to make a team happen. Various cultures, languages, and ideas can come together in a positive way, or sometimes interact negatively with one another. Better to get this sort of thing figured out away from the competitive pressures of a race.”

An EF Education First-Drapac squad that includes Modolo, McLay, Pierre Rolland and Sep Vanmarcke will head down the Spanish coast from Girona to ride the five-day Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana (Jan 31-Feb 4), while Uran will travel home to Colombia to lead a squad in the new Oro y Paz race (Feb 6-11).