Ben O’Connor, the 22-year-old Western Australian, started 2018 with a bang, placing 7th in the GC at the Tour of the Alps, 11th in Volta Ciclista a Catalunya and 18th in Santos Tour Down Under. O’Connor has shown incredible progression, not only this season, but from the moment he started to concentrate on cycling a little over 4 years ago. The Very Beginning “I didn’t get into cycling until quite late I guess. It all started out of jealousy really, which was of a friend who was already riding. I asked if I could join him once I got a road bike but he never.
I haven’t written a blog in such a long time and I feel that now is the perfect time to get back to it and tell you what’s been going on at the van Zyl household. These past 5 weeks have been tough and different to all our previous summers. I’ve spent this past month while the sun is shining and people heading to the beach, on the indoor trainer trying to minimise performance loss while dealing with my injury. Trying to stay motivated and positive to make a strong comeback and enjoy the rest of the season. During the period of 6-29 May I.
After winning the Tour de Langkawi overall, I had to jet back across multiple time zones to take part in the World Tour Tirreno-Adriatico which started a week later. Here is how the race went for me… Stage 1 Calm before the storm! Team time trials are one of the most intense facets in our sport and this one I found particularly hard after Tour of Langkawi a few days before, time and climate changes. Stage 2 Getting ready for a intense stage with two of the most experienced men in the sport when it comes to sprinting. Cant ask for better mentors than Mark Cavendish and.
So I just got back to my home in Girona after completing the Tour de Langkawi with the team. It was a great race for us with Reinardt winning the overall. Here is my take on the week’s racing… Stage 1 Le Tour de Langkawi, maybe you can also call it Le Tour de Opportunities. With 6 rider teams it’s a difficult race to control and those willing to risk might succeed. I tried, but got caught 5km before the finish. Stage 2 It was a hot day and the humidity is something else in this part of the world. What was really nice is.
Getting to my first grand tour was something I really worked hard for so to finish it now, it is a pretty amazing achievement. I am really happy to have made it to Madrid. When I first started the Vuelta I thought I’d just be there trying to finish but I was also happy with my performance. I was there to help the team when needed, getting bottles and with Louis doing so well on the GC it was important that we all did our part. I also made it into two breakaway’s, on stage 9 and stage 18. The first breakaway was good for.
I’m sitting here at Chicago O’Hare International Airport waiting for my flight to board to Barcelona. My last race was the Amgen Tour of Califorina and I took the opportunity to visit my in laws who live in Nebraska. It was the perfect post ‘first half – mid season’ break getaway. Spending quality time with them while recovering the mind and body from 40 days of racing so far for 2015. I’m satisfied with how my 2015 season is playing out. In December I sat down with the coaches and my DS Alex Sans to discuss my goals and schedule. At this point everything is.
The first part of my 2015 season has been a big success for me and has given me the confidence to look forward to the rest of the season with high hopes. It started with a really good off season and base training in November and December in South Africa. I really like training in South Africa and the weather that time of the year and most of the rest of the year is really good. I managed to do around 3000km in December at an altitude of around 1600m. Mostly just endurance rides from 4 to 5 hours but this year I also added.
It’s been a few days now and it’s still sinking in that I’ve won my first European race. The plan was to go for the stage win and we weren’t even really thinking of GC. On the second last lap I could sense all the other favourites were on the limit and I was still feeling good. It gives you that extra motivation when everyone else is suffering around you. I decided to make the move. It was from far out from around 25km to go but I sensed it was the right moment. I stayed away on my own which is always the best.
The 2014 season definitely didn’t end the way I would have hoped if I consider how the last races went. Breaking a couple of ribs in my 2nd last race was definitely not ideal, nonetheless 7 weeks off the bike was about to start. This was the first time I had ever taken such a long time off from any sort of exercise so you can imagine it lead to some interesting times when I eventually got going on the bike again. Meeting all the new guys for the team and all the sponsors could not have gone better than the way it did down.
Looking out of my window leaves me with the feeling, that the weather couldn’t be any worse: zero degrees and the rain is washing away the snow. Luckily, I don’t need to spend my working hours in the saddle anymore. Instead I’m planning the coming months for the riders. I’m really fired up to do so, as we’re going to have a great schedule. We will have our second training camp on Mallorca in just a couple of days, before we split the team into 3 groups. One group is going to Australia to show off our stripes at the Herald Sun Tour and the.