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More from Garmin-Cervélo’s Boulder camp

The camp gave senior team members a chance to reflect on how the team has progressed

BOULDER, Colo. (VN) — The Garmin-Cervélo team 2012 lineup entertained a sold-out crowd at the Boulder Theater in Boulder, CO on Thursday.

The team presentation offered fans, media and other industry professionals the opportunity to rub elbows with the stars and get their questions, as well as musical requests in the case of David Zabriskie’s live cover of Proud Mary, answered.

The accessibility that riders exhibited was as apparent as their celebrity. The stage was set with inviting couches and desks in a style that fit perfectly with argyle sweater-vests, adorned with accessories an eccentric uncle would have on display at his fishing lodge. The setting created a familial environment, as though the audience had been invited to spend the evening in the team’s living room to share stories over aged scotch.

The event was designed in large part for the benefit of the riders themselves. Throughout the week, the team provided them with activities, rides and meetings with directors and sponsors.

The camp gave senior team members a chance to reflect on how the team has progressed. The Boulder Theater is the same venue where the original Garmin team members were first presented four years ago.

Tyler Farrar told VeloNews, “In a way it’s been a kind of a homecoming coming back here. Four years ago we were here and we were new guys on an all new team in a new experience and didn’t know what was going to happen. Now it’s progressed and it’s been really fun. We weren’t here the last couple years, and coming back has been a good time.”

The presentation was a chance for Andrew Talansky to observe how he has grown with the team over the past year. “For me the second year coming back is really nice,” commented Talansky. “Just having been on the team for a year, you’re not nervous any more, you’re not stressed, you’re not thinking, ‘okay, this is a whole new thing.’ Last year coming in to the Cayman Islands, especially with guys like Thor (Hushovd) coming to the team and Heinrich (Haussler) and all the guys you haven’t met it’s a bit more tentative. Now it’s a bit like family.”

For some, like Fabian Wegmann, it was a public introduction to the Garmin- Cervélo team. The German joined the team after the Leopard-Trek and RadioShack merger left him without a sponsor. “Everything is new for me,” Wegmann told VeloNews. “ I’ve got my new bike and I’ve had everything fixed.  Everybody is new for me. I have to learn a lot of names and faces.”

The camp gave the riders an opportunity to spend some time together riding around Boulder, as well as some fun off the bike. Team-building exercises included a 10-mile hike. According to Farrar, it was a, “Pretty insane adventure orienteering hike … and that was really fun.”

The team’s tight bond was obvious at the presentation. While there were many new faces, the domestic scene of the argyle-covered team seated on couches and lounge chairs at the Boulder Theater sealed in the impression that the team is a family.

Farrar spoke to this bond. “Like any team it molds and changes over the years,” he said. “We kind of have a core group, and at this point they’re practically family. I spend more time with Dave (Millar) and Christian (Vande Velde) and Ryder (Hesjedal) and Zabriskie and Tom (Danielson) than I do with my real family.”

The camp was also work-intensive. Wegmann said, “We had some great days here, hard-working days.”

The hard work now leaves their time open for important hard work later. “We’ve gotten a lot of meetings out of the way with sponsors and directors so that when we meet in January it’s just for training,” said Talansky.

Finally, the camp was an opportunity for riders to get their race programs for the coming season. “I think I have a good program,” said Wegmann. “I get to do nearly every race I want, so that’s really nice.”

The programs stopped shy of the Tour, though, leaving that yet to be announced. “We made the whole schedule until the Tour de France, so it’s not fixed in my plans,” Wegmann said. “For sure I want to go there, it’s a dream for everybody, but if it doesn’t happen it’s not bad. The world goes not down.”

The season will undoubtedly be full of surprises for the anti-doping and nearly gluten-free team. The Boulder Theater offered a unique glimpse into the personalities underneath the helmets, though, and a sure sense that the young riders and the new additions to the team will feel at home on the team in no time.