Skip to main content

Inside the MTN-Qhubeka service course - Gallery

Image 1 of 33

The racks of Enve wheels in the service course

The racks of Enve wheels in the service course
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 2 of 33

General manager Brian Smith is working hard for the 2016 seasdon

General manager Brian Smith is working hard for the 2016 seasdon
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 3 of 33

This wardrobe contains arm and leg warmers

This wardrobe contains arm and leg warmers
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 4 of 33

There are also plenty of Castelli gloves and mitts

There are also plenty of Castelli gloves and mitts
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 5 of 33

The black and white team jersey is made by Castelli

The black and white team jersey is made by Castelli
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 6 of 33

A wardrobe is full of high 5 energy bars

A wardrobe is full of high 5 energy bars
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 7 of 33

The riders Met time trial helmet are stored together

The riders Met time trial helmet are stored together
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 8 of 33

The massage tables are stored away during the winter

The massage tables are stored away during the winter
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 9 of 33

Boxes of Selle Italia saddles

Boxes of Selle Italia saddles
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 10 of 33

The team uses both electronic and mechanical Shimano gears

The team uses both electronic and mechanical Shimano gears
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 11 of 33

The component room is undergoing a full inventory

The component room is undergoing a full inventory
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 12 of 33

An Italian coffee machine keeps the caffeine flowing in the service course

An Italian coffee machine keeps the caffeine flowing in the service course
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 13 of 33

Several jerseys and trophies decorate the lounge area

Several jerseys and trophies decorate the lounge area
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 14 of 33

The MTN-Qhubeka Tour de France bikes await shipment

The MTN-Qhubeka Tour de France bikes await shipment
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 15 of 33

MTN-Qhubeka can chose between every depth of Enve carbon wheels

MTN-Qhubeka can chose between every depth of Enve carbon wheels
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 16 of 33

Racks of new Cervelo time trial bikes will be built up for the 2016 season

Racks of new Cervelo time trial bikes will be built up for the 2016 season
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 17 of 33

The racks are packed with old and new Cervelo frames

The racks are packed with old and new Cervelo frames
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 18 of 33

General manager Brian Smith with office manager Mary di Lanno

General manager Brian Smith with office manager Mary di Lanno
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 19 of 33

Boxes of Rotor cranks and chainsets will be cleaned and serviced

Boxes of Rotor cranks and chainsets will be cleaned and serviced
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 20 of 33

Handlebars of every size are available

Handlebars of every size are available
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 21 of 33

One of the special bikes that the team helps provide to African children via the Qhubeka programme

One of the special bikes that the team helps provide to African children via the Qhubeka programme
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
Image 22 of 33

Rotor rings and cranks on Edvald Boasson Hagen's Cervélo S5

Rotor rings and cranks on Edvald Boasson Hagen's Cervélo S5
(Image credit: MTN-Qhubeka)
Image 23 of 33

Hands up, not hand outs for MTN-Qhubeka

Hands up, not hand outs for MTN-Qhubeka
(Image credit: MTN-Qhubeka)
Image 24 of 33

Edvald Boasson Hagen's Cervélo S5

Edvald Boasson Hagen's Cervélo S5
(Image credit: MTN-Qhubeka)
Image 25 of 33

Daniel Teklehaimanot (MTN-Qhubeka)

Daniel Teklehaimanot (MTN-Qhubeka)
(Image credit: Bert Geerts/dcp-bertgeerts@xs4all.nl)
Image 26 of 33

Steven Cummings of African team MTN-Qhubeka wins stage 14 of the Tour de France on Nelson Mandela day.

Steven Cummings of African team MTN-Qhubeka wins stage 14 of the Tour de France on Nelson Mandela day.
Image 27 of 33

Kristian Sbaragli (MTN-Qhubeka) on the stage 10 podium.

Kristian Sbaragli (MTN-Qhubeka) on the stage 10 podium.
(Image credit: Bettini)
Image 28 of 33

Edvald Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) gives a post-race interview

Edvald Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) gives a post-race interview
Image 29 of 33

Back at the MTN-Qhubeka team car

Back at the MTN-Qhubeka team car
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
Image 30 of 33

Edvald Boasson Hagen is easy to spot in his Norwegian national jersey

Edvald Boasson Hagen is easy to spot in his Norwegian national jersey
(Image credit: Gruber Images)
Image 31 of 33

The nine MTN-Qhubeka riders to ride the 2015 Tour de France

The nine MTN-Qhubeka riders to ride the 2015 Tour de France
(Image credit: Gruber Images)
Image 32 of 33

Jim Songezo of MTN - Qhubeka leads the chase

Jim Songezo of MTN - Qhubeka leads the chase
(Image credit: Mark Gunter)
Image 33 of 33

Tyler Farrar (MTN-Qhubeka)

Tyler Farrar (MTN-Qhubeka)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

The racing season may be over and most riders are enjoying their holidays but for team staff and management at the MTN-Qhubeka service course in Tuscany, the next few weeks and months are arguably the busiest time of the year as they prepare for the 2016 season.

MTN-Qhubeka had a hugely successful 2015, riding the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana, winning 18 races, including Steve Cummings’ stage victory in the Tour de France.

The squad will be known as Team Dimension Data in 2016 and could perhaps step up to WorldTour level thanks to the arrival of further sponsorship from Deloitte and others brands. Mark Cavendish and several other riders have come on board, giving the team an even bigger presence in the peloton and higher goals to aim for next season.

Like every service course, MTN-Qhubeka’s European headquarters is in a non-descript business park, in this case on the outskirts of Lucca. Behind the brown brick façade there is the logistical nerve-centre that keeps the team running as smoothly as possible. Only the sight of the black and white striped team vehicles reveal it is a service course but a sophisticated alarm system ensures all the bikes and equipment are kept safe.

The team has its offices and training base in the same building, while a huge warehouse that holds the team’s bikes and equipment and allows the two huge mechanics' trucks to sit inside. Team buses are kept elsewhere. Office staff are already busy, planning and booking travel for training camps, and early-season races. General Manager Brian Smith was kept in the service course this week, talking to his new riders, overseeing the inventory process and preparing the final details for the team’s 2016 campaign.

The training rooms and lounge area are quiet in the absence of the riders during Cyclingnews' visit. However, many of them are based in nearby Lucca during the season. They often drop in for a coffee, some work on their training bikes or to leave a jersey they may have won in a race. Several from the 2015 season already decorate the lounge area created for the riders and guests.

The main warehouse area is packed with Cervelo bikes, Enve wheels, Castelli clothing and other components and equipment. During the season the trucks and bikes are almost constantly on the road. Three mechanics work full time at the service course during the winter to ensure everything is ready for the season ahead.

A few of the 2015 team issue Cervelo bikes will sold to the public but most will be returned to Cervelo. A number of yellow and silver Tour de France numbers bikes, with race numbers still attached, sit in a passageway awaiting shipping. Other bikes are being build-up and will be used by riders for winter training at home. New Cervelo time trial frames fill a rack, ready to be built up with new Rotor and Shimano components. Long rows of Enve carbon fibre wheels wait to be cleaned, serviced and new tubulars attached for the 2016 season. Every item of equipment is accounted for in the component room, with boxes of Shimano components, handlebars and other equipment.

Some of the 2015 equipment will be sent back to the sponsors and suppliers, making room for new equipment. While the riders enjoy their holidays and time off the bike, the 2016 season has already begun at the service course.