Mallorca Cycling

Pat Douetil, Photographer and Ride Leader, on Mallorca with Viva Velo

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Velo photographer Patrick Douetil accompanied the Viva Velo team to Mallorca for our spring training camps this year as a ride leader. Here he looks back on the experience and riding with Viva Velo.

‘Choose a job you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life’ – Confucius

‘Choose a job you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life’ – Confucius

“This was my first time ride leading with Viva Velo in Mallorca. I had the pleasure of visiting the Island the previous year but self sufficiently. The first strikingly obvious benefit of the Viva Velo tour was the healthy catalog of routes that traversed the quietest and prettiest roads to the popular climbs and destinations.

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Further to this was the connections that had been set up with all the best bike hire companies, hotels, restaurants and most importantly the best cafe stops. These connections led our groups to be met by warm handshakes, good service and amazing coffee everywhere we stopped for a mid ride refuel. ‘DS’ Dyll Davies and long term employee The Matt Wallis have clearly worked very hard to find the best of the island so all that’s needed from the guests and ride leaders is a passion for cycling. I’m very much looking forward to my next adventure with the guys and girls at Viva Velo.”

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To experience Mallorca with Viva Velo yourself, you can book onto one of our Mallorca cycling camps in October. You can find out more, or book, here.

All the photos featured in this blog post are courtesy of Pat himself. You can find out more about his work and see his other projects on his website.

Matt Wallis, Viva Velo Ride Leader, looks #BeyondBergen

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As I sit here after a week’s guiding in Mallorca, my season of riding is slowly drawing to a close. With just a couple of trips left on my Viva Velo calendar I’m starting to reflect on what’s been an amazing year. With new clients, returning friends and other racers I’ve clocked up 11,000kms so far including trips to the south of France, Germany and Catalunya.

While the pros compete in Norway for the mythical rainbow stripes, at Viva Velo we’ve been contemplating what challenges await us #BeyondBergen. As an amateur racer, my season has not been as fruitful as I would have hoped. Time constraints meant I didn’t pin on a number until midway through the season. I rode a handful of races and was in good form before being involved in a nasty crash during a sprint. I snapped a bike, lost some skin and a bit of motivation but am still determined to pick up more points next season. For the majority of riders, myself included, racing is not the only reason I turn the pedals. I’ve also enjoyed the process of becoming the strongest I’ve ever been on a bike, while still eating a bit too much cake.

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The rest of this year will mainly be spent at my “normal” job with Richmond Cycles. I love spending time in the shop chatting bikes and getting people set up to go on their own adventures. The shop owner and I have been developing an exciting bike fitting service which will be available to book soon. Using cameras, computer software and cool lasers we’ll be able to adapt current fits and spec up new bikes. I’m really looking forward to putting my sport rehabilitation degree back to good use for our customers, applying some clinical reasoning to prevent injury and improve performance.

In the saddle I’ll be looking to keep the kilometres ticking over through the inevitably miserable UK weather. I’ve developed a good engine this year, but would love to be maintaining 4 w/kg on my 20min power test next season while retaining my kick in the sprints. I’ll have to stay on my game in order to keep on the same page as some of our clients. They have been making some amazing performance gains this year with PR’s toppling on many of our trips.

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My next year with Viva Velo is already looking mouthwatering. Alongside the mainstays such as Mallorca and Avignon-Nice, I’m super excited about the Italian prospects of the Stelvio and Tuscany. I rode the latter a few years ago while touring and have always had a hankering to return.

At the moment my life is all about keeping doors open for new opportunities, meeting new people and sharing experiences. Life with the shop and on the road over the past year has helped me achieve just that. I’m hoping next year will include more of the same, both in and out the saddle.

I’d really love to know where you want to be heading for the rest of this year and into next. Set it out using the hashtag #BeyondBergen and see where the road takes you.