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Rory Sutherland (HealthNet)
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The Rory Sutherland Tour of California diary

San Francisco may be a long way away from the streets of Canberra, Australia, where Rory Sutherland spent his childhood, but the 24 year-old feels right at home there with his HealthNet presented by Maxxis squad. The 2004 Australian Under 23 National Champion will keep Cyclingnews readers up to date every day on his and the team's progress in the Tour of California.

Index to all Entries

Road trips, Redlands, racing...and Russ!

'Killer' Karl Menzies
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So here it is, diary entry numero uno.

And here I am, waiting in a hotel for the Amgen Tour of California to begin. I will admit that I'm pretty excited to be back racing again, and especially here in the States with my new squadra - Team Health Net Presented by Maxxis.

We've been through the training camp in Southern California. My new teammates, well… what can I say, what a fun group of guys. It's so good to have guys you get along with both on and off the bike, I really think this develops to race results.

Russel and I have taken some time out
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The management have been awesome, the organisation behind a bike team is huge, and these guys do some really hard work. Those guys doing their jobs right means all we have to do is race, that's it!

Onto the sponsors: they all turned up at the camp, and even rode with us for a few days. It way so good to have these guys hit us with questions, and actually listen to our opinions, as daft as some of my suggestions may have been!

Spent a week with my new roommate, housemate, training partner and coffee drinking buddy Russell Downing in a place called Redlands, which is East of Los Angeles. We're going to be spending some serious time together this year!

My new pad in Redlands.
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Lucky he's okay (see, I can be nice Russ). We seem to have worked it out pretty well. When the Americans can't understand the 'Pom,' I translate. And when my Aussie is mistaken for me being a New Zealander (not only does steam come from my ears) he explains the situation to them.

It keeps the life interesting, that's for sure. It's just a shame old Russ hasn't figured out which lane you need to go through the bridge toll in…hmm, payback is sweet buddy.

So that's it for now. I've added some photos down the bottom, and if anyone's like me, then they will read a little, get bored, and look at the pics. How about I just keep them up to date instead of a diary?

I really enjoyed the team's
Photo ©: Rory Sutherland
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Oh yeah, my race roommate Tim 'TJ, il Capitano' Johnson says Hi to the readers. This man's going to be keeping me sane and my old head in the right place throughout the Amgen Tour of California!

Any roommate willing to share his special morning blend of coffee is a good friend!

Rory Sutherland

Photography

For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Rory Sutherland