Vätternrundan with Skoda Cycling Team

When things just work, without hazzle and without seen stress. Then you know the planning has been good. Skoda Cycling Team and Vätternrundan is such a thing. Friendly people with things under control, trusting that you also got things under control.

Travelled by bus Saturday morning all together and when arriving in the centre of Motala the bikes where there and the numbers got handled out. Checked the bikes, got dressed and rolled down to the exhibition centre for photos, like selfies with the Pro’s:

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Back to the bus to fuel up, fill up and get ready. Meeting Henrik

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and be cool with Glenn:

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Start ready on time, cheered on by Madde:

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I was one of the last riders rolling through the start on this 20000+ event. Felt a bit cool. Easy in the beginning with a locked train. Got rolling after 10min it felt good. Was going around and taking my turns and it felt well disciplined but not too serious. Down in the tail once but it felt harder so went around again.

Even had time to take photos in Uppgränna:

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A short stop after Gränna where the shoe covers went off and we got company by Tobias Ludvigsson to Kaxholmen. Climbs where I been dead before felt great and I could keep up going fast downhill. So cool riding in a 30+ group with everyone looking the same and with riders like Calle Friberg and Henrik Sparr who doesn’t seem to get tired 😉

Through Jönköping and up Trånghalla feeling great. Down Bankeryd flying and then the first stop. 5min stop with new bottles and Enervit energy. All prepared by the team and all bags the same so no need to look for a certain one. Back on the bike and it felt wise to stay a bit in the tail as it was 180km left.

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Warm and hard and it felt like it went a bit too fast for me taking turns. Tried to keep the tail straight. Took 3 turns the next 90km to the next stop. Now just water in the bottles, a coke and more gels and I was ready, felt more under control than last stop.

The last part where we were ahead of schedule felt good. And the finish got closer and closer. Happyride.se took some nice pictures:

And then the thing happens that always happens. Around 20km left and everyone wanted to be finished. Felt like the tempo went but everyone hanged on and everyone got a bit more happy 😉

Finished at 7h27min (18min faster than the target)

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Happy and really tired, also had a bit of a problem to stand straight 😉

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Map and stats: Strava

After high fives, hugs and some champagne we took our bus to the hotel for dinner and talking about salt, cramps and strange things from Skåne. Massage and breakfast today before we went back to Stockholm again.

An Awesome weekend with great people and a team behind with Skoda making it so easy. 😀 And so impressed with some riders be able to ride so fast and make it look so easy. Maybe some day I can also be such a rider…

 

Le Peloton #160

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You know this thing with recovery? I didn’t and tried you hang on to Le Peloton today. A lot of fast guys almost making all time records today but I didn’t. My left leg said stop on top of Österviksbacken and I didn’t manage to hold a wheel around Fisksätra. Dropped.

Took the shortcut at Kranglan and rode with Oskar to Älta where we got caught by the 1st group again. Tried to hang on and thought it felt good until Storkällan. Went alright on the climb but when it flattened out and the speed rised I couldn’t keep up. Just to fast which feels like a good reason to drop. Rode the rest alone as fast I could and ended in the sun outside Le Mond for breakfast and which fast happy people 🙂

Like Rille captured:

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Biggest reason I tried to ride fast today was because of the bike I borrowed. Wanted to try it for real and sure it’s superfast. But I wasn’t.

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Specialized Venge Vias Expert Disch with Roval CL64 wheels. The Rocket Red color even makes me like red 😉

Map and stats: Strava

Le Peloton #158

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Many degrees, many cyclists 😀 Record this year with around 60 cyclists.

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so many but no ambassadors so I stepped up trying to say something about riding safe, following traffic rules and so on.

It started ok but was a bit further back than I planned to be when coming down to Järnvägspizza but went fine and in front a bit after the tight corner. Didn’t feel awesome up to Fisksätra but managed to hang on and got really happy to tackle the first obstacle. Far back at Stationsbacken then again and saw the first riders go away when half the peloton had to stop for a bus in the roundabout in Ektorp. Ended with a big chase and in Storängen at the red light all was together again. Got a bit too long way to go around in the front and got tired to Nacka Forum. Down to Sickla I got 2 (!) KOMs 😀

Up on Viktor’s wheel up Hellas and after I took a turn I was really tired. Dropped a bit and hoped for someone else to cover the gap. Worked a bit until a car tried to passed and got into the middle of the group. My legs died and I saw the peloton float away…

Got company by Oscar and 4 others. Rode the last part together and it went pretty good. At Skarpnäck I stopped for the redlight like you should but the others just passed 😦 Had to ride the long last straight alone behind and wasn’t as happy as I hoped I would be. Complained a bit and then we rode to Le Mond to be happy again. Eating breakfast in the sun is the best 😀

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All just smiles, and coffee. And bragging Stockholm style about KOM’s, big turns and wattage, or just happy to meet a proper pro cyclist :). Everyone dreaming of sitting there in the sun all day. Happy life

Map and stats: Strava

Le Peloton #157

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First Le Peloton in our new SCS club kit. Felt a bit slow on the way to the gathering but thought it just was the time and that I had to wake up.

Joined the first group but it felt a bit too hard already at Nacka Forum so changed my mind, took it easy to Saltsjö-Duvnäs and then joined the 3rd group. It wasn’t super fast but as there was no flow or everyone going around and taking turns it became hard. I got good training and nice riding together with Oscar that feels like a long time ago. In a messy group it’s always nice with one or a couple you can trust. Ended with a few others at Le Mond for breakfast, but very few today, a bit sad.

Map and stats: Strava

Le Peloton #152

You know riding in almost rain in the middle of nowhere and it got to this magic misery you only see on Rapha videos?

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Today it started like this. The warm up got fast as we had tailwind and it felt like I had more control than last time trying to ride with the fast guys. Survived up to Fisksätra but when we turned right my left leg died and I got dropped big time. Christian got up to me and while not getting back to the main group we rode alone in a quiet tempo back to Duvnäs. Took the shortcut over Kranglans väg.

At Hästhagen we thought if we where ahead or behind the main group. Rode as good as we could and got company by one more guy. Took the shortcut in Älta too as I thought we where behind (wasn’t I saw on Strava’s Flyby). Our company left for home and we passed a new guy who couldn’t keep up. Caught Johanna in the end and rode together to Le Mond.

Got a bit up but will hopefully get some order on my leg after a massage I’ve booked for Tuesday, looking forward 🙂 Want to use the hashtag #lookprogofast sometime 😉 Just went the pro looking today with a scarf like Alessandro De Marchi had on Fleche Wallone 🙂

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Map and stats with too low heart rate: Strava (now I fixed my heart rate belt again, new battery)

Le Peloton #149

Calm before the storm:

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No matter if it was a terrorist attack or just some stupid guy stealing a truck and driving into people I won’t be frightened. Terrorist attacks is about scaring people. I feel sorry for the injured and killed people but I still think good of people no matter belief and no matter how many idiots that steal trucks and drive into people close to me.

So like many other mornings I started this one with Le Peloton with happy faces. It went a little bit better for me than Wednesday but couldn’t keep up all the way so skipped the Fisksätra loop together with Christian and Jorge. I was in front 2-3 times but nothing to brag about as most of my time I just thought of hanging onto the wheel in front of me. Or get up to the first group the 2 times people made gaps…

I got a PR at Värmekraftverket where I passed the peloton and I got really tired in the end. Awesome. Ended up putting our bikes together:

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And having a nice breakfast at Le Mond:

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So let’s keep on living a good life and make the best of the situation. Don’t be scared, people are friendly on the inside!

Map and stats: Strava

Le Peloton #148

You know spring when everyone brings their racebikes with high profile wheels and best clothes to training? When everyone is high on going fast outside and showing how well they trained all winter? That was like todays Le Peloton:

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A lot of people, a lot of fast people and a lot of people able to hang on the fast people. And it was this guy a.k.a me:

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Looking fast, trying to take my turns and sit in a good position. Unfortunately I’m not as fast as I hoped and after doing a hard start including a PR before the real start and got dropped pretty quick…

Turned around and tried to get the cramp out of my left leg and got caught again at Järla. Sat pretty high and took a turn before Sickla. Then I tried to keep up with the fast ones averaging over 40km/h to Älta. On the hard Evalundsvägen through Älta I always think it goes fast and today I touched my PR, not the best way before Storkällan and I got dropped for the 2nd time…

Had to ride the rest alone and wasn’t as fast as I dreamt about. To be honest I hoped for more and when I came to Le Mond I wasn’t as satisfied as many others. Next time I will push harder, go faster and not get dropped! I want to fight as good as my friend Emil is able to do, or Sagan that doesn’t seem to be able to give up.

Map and stats: Strava