Mariusz Witecki writes on his website about his impressions from the start in the Volta a Catalunya (the Word Tour category).
Another start behind me, this time that was a completely different class of race, because one of the World Tour. Catalunya was a very important test for us, we knew it would be hard because during the previous season we had not had a lot of opportunities to take part in races of the highest level, besides a season finished early means that the beginning is especially hard for us, but as they say, the beginnings of the good are tough, and I think it will be a case with us.
For me the race started especially badly, because two days before the start gastric flu got me, or a similar virus, because of which the whole day got out of my life. The upset stomach with sickness, and a fever at night, fortunately it let go on Saturday and I had whole two days, to recover. The race was very fast from the beginning, from the first stage, from ‘kilometre 0’ there have been unceasing attacks, I had a feeling that everybody wants to break away, which made the pace very strong, and like that for the whole race: fast in flat stretches and tough up the hill. The kilometres ridden at such a speed in Catalonia will for sure bear fruit during the next races. Now a bit of rest, at the weekend two short starts, on Saturday a criterium in Dzierżoniów, on Saturday Sobótka. I will treat those races as training, though, and I will focus on getting to the finishing line, because I know it from my own experience that at the beginning it gets really nervous there, everybody feels strong and is full of verve after winter. Usually cyclists push their way ahead without caring about other cyclists, and they cause crashes, of which there is plenty in Sobótka every year. The next important race is Giro del Trentino, where the leg should be much better, and consequently our results should be satisfactory too.