Climbing Mount Toubkal with Penny Rowson

Last week i decided to try something a little different and travel to a different continent with just a backpack and a friend. We explored Morocco, visiting a different culture (the hustle and bustle of Marrakech), experiencing new foods (such as Berber tajines) and climbing to the top of the highest peak in North Africa! (Mount Toubkal, 4,180m) Even with slight altitude sickness i could appreciate how breathtaking the views were and worth a good 15hrs slog in deep snow!

Now we’re back in France on a second team training camp, sticking to the roads and the bike.  It’s nice to ride along taking in the views of the Pyrenees.  It’s really fun here with the girls and I can’t fault the training and the atmosphere here. There’s a carnival going on three times a day over the weekends for 10weeks, all dressed in white costumes throwing confetti everywhere e.g mels face.

Penny Rowson by Huw WIlliams
Penny Rowson by Huw WIlliams

Huw Williams popped by to take just in time for the festival and to take photos of us in our new milltag kit! They specialise in design and have upped their game again on last years kit which we didn’t think was possible. Milltag have really taken our feedback on board and produced some high end quality kit, by making such subtle changes. The blues a lot brighter, there are more stripes, and yet the kit seem to still keeps its simplicity and stylishness.  Most importantly, it’s the most technical race clothing I’ve ever had, so those marginal gains have been taken care of.

Chris Georgas is my coach and he runs our Limoux based training camps. He’s been the Canadian national coach and DS of many women UCI teams. Not only is he full of knowledge but the most positive and happy guy you’ll meet making our time here stress free as well as enjoyable. He goes out of his way so much and we can’t thank him enough!  5 girls on the team are also funded by the Dave Rayner fund that supports aspiring talented riders making the move to live and race abroad; in memory of Dave a cyclist from Yorkshire who moved out to Italy and came 14th in the junior world champs and not long after turned pro for Raleigh-banana but sadly past away at a young age.

4 of the 5 Dave Rayner funded women - Photo by Huw Williams
4 of the 5 Dave Rayner funded women – Photo by Huw Williams

We’re really appreciative of this supported along with Chris and our team sponsors. Couldn’t be more prepared, organised and well looked after heading into this season.  Looking forward to it!

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