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Rally Cycling ramps up for busy spring schedule with Spanish training camp

Minneapolis-based squad set to race highly competitive Volta ao Algarve and Volta a Catalunya in coming months.

Rally Cycling is ramping up for a busy spring of European racing with a pre-season camp in Castellón, Valencia.

The men’s squad kick-starts an 11-day block in Spain on Wednesday before clicking into race-mode at the Clasica de Almeria, February 14, with appearances at the highly-competitive Volta ao Algarve and Volta a Catalunya scheduled for the coming months.

The American squad, which scooped former WorldTour riders Ben King and Joey Rosskopf during the off-season, is part of a star-studded field at Algarve, which includes 14 WorldTour teams in February. On Tuesday, the team was also invited to race the Volta a Catalunya alongside a full 19-team WorldTour field. Alpecin-Fenix, home of Mathieu van der Poel, and Arkéa-Samsic, team of Nairo Quintana, was also invited.

The Rally Cycling pre-season camp is set to see 12 of the 17-man roster in Castellón de la Plana – a coastal city four hours from the team’s service course in Girona. A Rally Cycling statement explained that the additional paperwork and COVID protocol means that the remaining five will join later.

“This training camp is the first bite out of the season to try and get back to normalcy,” said team director Patrick McCarty. “This isn’t going to be the most impressive training camp of these guys’ lives, we’re not going to destroy them and prep them for some insane season. We still need to ease into it a little bit and consider we might not be racing full gas until March or April.

“It’s an opportunity to get everything together, get all the bikes ready, all the new equipment – which is tough these days because the pandemic has affected shipments from our partners, not just events and personal travel.”

Other top European races for the men’s team in the coming months include the Tour de Haut Var, La Drôme Classic, and Le Samyn.

The women’s squad is hosting a training camp in early March ahead of opening its European season at GP Oetingen on March 14.