Spanish Racing Wrap Up

Robert Hassan | Thursday 24th October, 2013


Hi everyone


That's me back from racing in Spain for this year. It has been a great experience and have really enjoyed the hard racing there.


Attacking in the Oiarzun RR, the World tour San Sebastion Classic uses this climb in the final part of the race.


After my last blog, I had a great final couple of months racing in Spain with my team, Ibaigane Opel.


For most of August I was having two or three hard road races a week which was great for keeping good form. In meant life in Zeanuri flew by and it was my most enjoyable month of racing in Spain.


From July onwards, I was amazed at the difference a few weeks made as I was climbing and beating most of the strongest riders I have been racing against over the season and also getting into the crucial moves of the races. I was regularly in the top tens and came very close to the win many times.

In the race long break in the Lemioz RR, really fast climbs.



In particular, two big races I had were the Lenhendakari 3 day Challenge and the Vuelta Valencia which I competed in last season.


The 3 day Challenge consisted of three individual road races around the Basque Country with an overall GC which I found myself fighting it out for. I felt strong and was lying 4th overall by the start of the final day. I came down with a cold and suffered through out the day but I survived and clung on to finish 6th overall.


The Vuelta Valencia was a 4 day Elite International race, with national squads from as far afield as Japan, Israel & Holland, as well as the best Spanish teams. It was an very tough race, average speeds of 27mph, long steep climbs with 17% ramps, rough roads, cross winds and the searing heat made it a wearing down process. I was really happy with my performance as I climbed well on the big mountainous stage 2 and managed to get 2nd overall GC in the U23 category.


I will go into the story in more detail in a future blog.

On the attack with 15km to go in the Geirnica RR, held on with a couple of others until  the Argentine team pulled us back with 1km and half to the line.



Sprint finish in the Escalante Road race in the region of Cantabria.


I want to thank everyone for the support and encouragement this year including my team, Ibaigane Opel. They have been very welcoming to me the past two years I have raced with them and the managers have been very kind and supportive as well. I would like to thank the Braveheart Fund for their support and to everyone who kindly donates. It has helped a big part to race abroad this season.


I'm glad I spent the year racing in Spain, I have learnt so much on and off the bike by committing myself abroad for the year. Learnt a lot more than I have any other year by far. It has gave me more experience, confidence and drive to give it my all next year.


Thanks for reading my blog this year and see you at the Braveheart ride and dinner if you are there!


Cheers


Robbie


More Pictures:


Winning the best team prize in Egiobar, first three across the line.


Large race long break in the Egoibar race, before we hit the last climb of the day.


Waiting at the start line


Egiobar


On the 2nd last climb in the Zegama race, 3rd day of the challenge, suffering with the cold but hung on for 6th overall GC.

The village of Zeanuri, at the foot of Mountains, where I lived for most of the season. Friendly community.


Local historic church, just up the hill


Team ride the day before the first stage of the Tour of Valencia



The first stage of the Vuelta Valencia started in the famous Valencia Moto GP racing circuit.


The team, the manager of the team Gartzi (left) and the president Juan Mari (right).

From my blog: http://roberthassan.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/spanish-racing-wrap-up.html



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