The race season kicked off with a blazing fast TTT at the UAE Tour. It was a good way to start the season and to finally have my first official outing with the MTS crew.
These TTT days pack so much into a short race effort, so I feel like I got a lot of bang for my buck in terms of settling in with the guys, the bikes, staff, team protocols, schedules, etc.
When you are out in the desert and away from the usual team trucks and buses, it means that everyone is a little more relaxed and adaptable around the TT buzz. For me, this is a solid way to start.
Physically and mentally, it means a very focused and intense effort and today was far from flawless.
We almost all came crashing down after a touch of wheels and slight misdirection from the wind and miscommunication after about 6 kilometers. Fortunately, we kept it up with a couple of guys going off into the sand. Quickly we regrouped and got it going again. After that, we found a nice rhythm and were able to empty the tank by the finish. Everyone gave everything of themselves for the team.
For me, I really appreciated how quickly we regrouped and handled the adversity. It’s a real takeaway to see how everyone handles moments like those. For me, I will only continue to improve on the new TT bike, and I’m confident we laid a solid foundation for the year ahead.
And we have maybe learned a few lessons and place to improve. Tomorrow we head into the road stages where the wind always is a factor and potentially decisive.
Race Images: Andrew Laity @andrewjlaity