News feature, January 14, 2005
Discovery Channel begin training in Solvang
By Les Clarke
After the presentation of the Discovery Channel Team on Monday, it was time to hit the road for pre-season training camp in Solvang, CA. Starting in brisk 7°c temperatures, the team headed off on a four hour training ride, covering some rolling hills to get the legs going.
Lance Armstrong, in the news recently as part of the Sunday Times/LA Confidentiel lawsuit, appeared relaxed and happy to be getting back on the bike with his team, more so than previous years, possibly as a result of winning his record-breaking sixth Tour de France last July.
With new uniforms and a host of new recruits, including American Tom Danielson, it was an opportunity to witness what could be the beginning of another big year for Armstrong and the team formerly known as US Postal. Armstrong relished the opportunity to chat with colleagues new and old, something that was not so apparent in previous years. Danielson seemed to enjoy the time with the squad, as did star recruit Yaroslav Popovych.
At the previous day's photo session, the team joked and appeared a pretty cohesive group - a good sign after the departure of some big names from their ranks and the change of major sponsor. It's down to some hard work for 2005.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Discovery Channel Cycling Team
- The Discovery Channel presents the 2005 Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team in Solvang, CA.
- It's LANCE!
- Lance Armstrong and Tom Danielson have a chat during one of the training rides.
- The Discovery team hits the road for the long season ahead.
Images by Jon Devich/Cyclingnews.com/epicimages.us
- Another angle of the team in their new kit complete with the 2005 team Treks.
- The Discovery team heads out on one of its first training camp rides of the season in Solvang, CA.
- George Hincapie and Michael Barry keep pace in the group.
- The low 40-degree temperatures offered the team a refreshing first couple of hours in the saddle each morning.
- Heavy rains in southern California made for a vibrant green backdrop against the team's new colors of gray and blue.
- Manuel Beltran and Jose Luis Rubiera work on their descending skills.
- The group powers up one of the many climbs in Southern Cali hill country.
- Similar to a scene from the Tour, the team rides through one of the area vineyards.
- Ex-mountain bike star Ryder Hesjedal tucks in behind Great Britain's strongman, Roger Hammond, as the group stretches out.
- Belgian rider Leif Hoste leads the group on Thursday's ride.
- The team rides through the enchanted forest.
Images by Steve Dascomb
- Your Treks are ready, gentlemen
- Van Heeswijk's the name...
- The steed of champions
- Johan Bruyneel was pretty relaxed in Solvang
- Antonio Cruz heads out
- The cockpit for 2005
- The sticker says it all
- Ready to rock'n'roll, boys. Manuel Beltran gets into gear.
- Tom Danielson happy to be in Solvang with the Discovery boys
- Antonio Cruz
- Lance Armstrong and the phone that never sleeps
- Guess who the sponsor is?
- All lined up and waiting...
- Sean Yates talking team, no doubt very busily
- Mike Creed's bike gets some last minute adjustments
- A hive of bikes and bodies as the Discovery boys prepare to ride
- Dogs like bikes too!
- A moment's pause before the work begins
- A quick inspection to check the new rig
- Armstrong doesn't look too pleased that the hard work's about to begin
- The man on everybody's lips
- All smiles for Lance Armstrong
- Lance looks pretty happy despite the cold
- Mike Creed contemplates what could be a great 2005
- Let's move 'em out!