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Dauphiné Libéré
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Moving on up: The Trent Wilson Journal 2004

After being one of six iTeamNova riders who made the cut last year when his Aussie Div III team merged with RDM-Flanders to form Flanders-iTeamNova, "Willo's" earned a place in Division II with Colombia Selle Italia in 2004. Follow his progress and get a taste of Aussie humour as he lights up the road in Europe. Trent also his own web site at www.trentwilson78.com where you can find out even more about this Sydney rider.

Big job ahead

Malaysia, January 29, 2004

G'day,

After seeing Cyclingnews journalist Anthony Tan this morning, I thought I should put the PlayStation down for a minute and write something creative.

The Tour de Langkawi starts tomorrow and I've just come back from the team presentation. As usual, the organisers did another good job in opening the tour. As our team went up, being called first as they won the team GC last year, I felt very tall and outta place. I had a Colombian climber either side of me and I felt about 7 foot tall, very weird.

Chillin' in Penang
Photo ©: CN

I left Sydney Sunday afternoon bound for Kuala Lumpur and met up with my new team mate Russell Van Hout and our Aussie mechanic for the tour Michele Primaro. Followed by a short flight to Penang, it was straight to the hotel for a shower and a good night's sleep, being midnight and 3am Sydney time.

I'm rooming with Russell and it seems like its going to be a fun year. I've known him for years and it seems our sense of humour is pretty similar. It's always good to have an Aussie on the team and a good bloke at that. I met the rest of the team Monday morning and they all seemed like nice guys. The first one to open up was [Ruber] Marin, quick to make the both of us feel at home. The rest all followed a day later when they opened up and stopped being shy. They all speak Italian as do Russell and I (well, regaining the lingo) and don't mind a joke or two.

The first training ride wasn't what I needed after stepping off the plane, but I got to witness how well these Colombians go up hills. We did a lap of the island: a few climbs to start and then ocean views the last hour. The weather as usual is hot, although this day we had showers.

By Tuesday, I had settled in and was making myself at home. You could've been mistaken for actually thinking it was our home by the time Tuesday night came. I invested in a PlayStation 2, along with 35 games and 80 DVD's to update my collection from China last year. I had to invest in some quality entertainment in preparation for six months of Italian TV. Russ, on the other hand, has bought speakers to go with his iPod, and also took the opportunity to update his home entertainment collection.

Wednesday we had a dual team training ride with Panaria, so I got a good chance to catch up on the past few months with Brett Lancaster and Graeme Brown. It was also good to catch up with my old team-mates, Scotty Guyton and Dom Peras, who are riding for various national teams. My old room-mate Jez Hunt and fellow Aussie Ben Day have also got the shopping bug and have turned DVD shopping into a game, claiming their XBox is better than a PlayStation 2. Probably is too!

Now down to the serious stuff. Racing starts tomorrow and the team is geed for a big one. They have always gone well here and hopefully this year will be no exception. We don't have a specialist sprinter here unfortunately, but with a 15km hilltop finish on day 2, it should settle the GC out early before it really gets settled on Genting on the second last day. The only hiccup is one of our 50kg hill climbers is out with a knee injury. He just won a tour in Venezuela, but now his knee has blown up. [Jose Rujano did not start the first stage from Penang to Taiping-Ed.]

Alright, that's it for now; will keep you updated during the tour,
Cheers Willo