The season has ended and with it the new one has already started. So I can briefly describe the events since my last race in Podpeč.

Last week, I travelled with my team-mate Jan Polanc to Milan and from there to Dubai the following day. The reason behind the travel is, of course the team building, socializing and meeting new faces who are joining the team next season. In other words, briefly, “Group Team Building”. At the same time, certain obligations related primarily to sponsors awaited us. So on the first day early in the morning we had a photo shoot on top of the Emirates Headquarters next to Dubai Airport. The reason for the early hour was that most of their planes were grounded at that time in the morning and of course this was the best opportunity for a good “sponsor” photo.

In the afternoon, we went to a modern sports center, the owner of which is the UAE Prince who also happens to be our sponsor. The interesting thing about this center is that it is possible to set the desired altitude on the premises, which means that it is a kind of active altitude room, except it is not for sleeping or resting as we know it but for training. Also interesting was the fact that some mountaineers go there for their preparations and then go directly to the Himalayas to conquer the world’s highest peaks. So in this center you can stay and train at the selected altitude.

The day ended with a transfer from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in the evening.

The next day was dedicated to our socializing, having fun and getting to know each other during various activities. We started with Paint ball and continued shooting clay pigeons. In the afternoon we tried to show our motoring skills on the go-kart track. The day passed in a relaxed and cosy atmosphere, where we also took some time to talk to each other and, at least with me and a few others, ended with attending a concert by Eminem, who performed in the city that evening.

The next morning was reserved for “cultural education” and a tour of the Louvre Museum’s very impressive building. It is really amazing what can be built in the middle of the desert. In the afternoon we visited the Ferrari World Amusement Park, where fun, adrenaline and laughter were not missing. Following this, the evening was reserved for a dinner with the club president.

The next day, together with some of the team-mates, we visited Abu Dhabi’s school (Youth Academy), where we explained the basics of cycling to the children and showed them how to ride on the training polygon and told them what we as professional cyclists actually do. This day’s afternoon was dedicated to “fashion” or in other words presenting and promoting new jerseys and clothing to be worn next season. At the same time we had the opportunity to visit the royal palace and about that I can only say that there is really no limit to what money can buy.

Finally, I could say that it was “tiring”, as there were many activities and obligations, but all in all it was very pleasant and everything was set in a very relaxed atmosphere. We also talked very briefly about the race plan and the preparations for the future. I will be more specific in the future 🙂

…but until then, best regards to everyone that follow me,

Tadej