Annemiek van Vleuten says riding with her new team is like “the first day of school,” as she is training with the Movistar squad for the first time.
The Dutch superstar has been meeting her new team-mates and staff, while also joining the men’s squad for a team time trial training session during the Movistar winter camp in Spain.
Former world champion Van Vleuten has signed with Movistar on a two year deal after five hugely successful seasons with Mitchelton-Scott.
In a blog post on her website, posted on Wednesday (January 12), Van Vleuten said: “It is all new, with many new people. We are here with about 100 people (riders and guidance), all of whom I don’t know yet, so for sure the first day I felt like I was experiencing my first day at a new school. And then also with many people who speak another language with each other. However, the first feeling was right and I feel very welcome. The first few days I receive confirmation that I have ended up in a warm and very professional environment.”
Movistar are holding their first training camp of 2021, for both the men’s and women’s teams, in Almería, Andalusia, Spain, with the camp running from January 8 until January 22.
Van Vleuten said riders are not allowed to mix too much with other team members and staff during the first few days of the camp to minimise the risk of coronavirus, despite everyone undergoing testing before arriving.
She added that the main aim of the camp is to get to know her fellow riders, mechanic, masseurs and team leaders better.
Van Vleuten said she has already had an extensive bike fit on her new Canyon Aeroad disc.
The team also ran team time trial training drills on a motor racing circuit, where Van Vleuten joined the men’s squad for a session.
She added: “After this I will also participate in training a few times with some men. This will be with the sprinters and classic riders, because it is already a challenge for me to keep up with them.”