CECILIE UTTRUP LUD­WIG

Procycling - - Prologue -

Af­ter a long block filled with many races, I got the op­por­tu­nity to fo­cus on train­ing and pre­par­ing for the up­com­ing races. There is no doubt that I’m a ‘race ma­chine’. I love to race, I love to com­pete. But some­times it’s also re­ally nice to have blocks dur­ing the sea­son where we have time to train prop­erly.

This time I chose to do a train­ing camp in Switzer­land. For me it’s a coun­try less trav­elled, so I was pleas­antly sur­prised by the stun­ning land­scape. Some peo­ple even say that it’s one of Europe’s most beau­ti­ful coun­tries. I tend to agree with them. I was cy­cling ev­ery day in pic­ture post­card-pretty scenery. The moun­tains are my pre­ferred bat­tle­ground. I love hilly races, but it is also ex­tremely re­ward­ing men­tally to be in the moun­tains. In gen­eral, the rugged na­ture touches my soul. Maybe it’s be­cause my na­tive coun­try, Den­mark, is flat like a pan­cake and used for in­ten­sive farm­ing. The hard­est thing about rid­ing my bike in Switzer­land was not to stop too many times to soak up the mo­ment and the view. I was re­ally lucky with the weather - sunny days with clear blue skies. That meant defin­ing and sharp­en­ing my cy­cling tan lines. You have got to love white rac­coon eyes and chin strap tan lines! Not to men­tion my shiny white an­kles and per­ma­nent white shorts.

This year, I’ll once again be com­pet­ing in the OVO En­ergy

Cecilie on the irst stage of the Emakumeen Bira in Spain, be­fore she heads to the UK for the Women’s Tour Women’s Tour in the UK. To me, it’s one of the best or­gan­ised races on the women’s cal­en­dar. I tip my hat for their abil­ity to in­volve the local com­mu­ni­ties. They have suc­ceeded in draw­ing large crowds along the course, mak­ing it a spe­cial event that I al­ways look for­ward to rac­ing. This year they are again show­ing other or­gan­is­ers the way of the fu­ture, as OVO En­ergy has an­nounced an equal prize fund. Other races have also an­nounced prize par­ity, but it is un­for­tu­nately still a rar­ity in women’s cy­cling. As Ellen van Dijk re­cently tweeted, it is still the norm that the mem­bers of a women’s teams go away with less than 100 from a race, even if they win. We wel­come any op­por­tu­nity to get paid fairly.

I’ll hope to see you guys at the Women’s Tour. But for now it is time for me to hit the road and work on those tan lines. I have to make sure they stay crisp!

Sunny days with clear blue skies, that meant de in­ing and sharp­en­ing my tan lines. You have got to love the white rac­coon eyes and chin strap lines!

The stun­ning Swiss land­scape was too good to re­sist for Cecilie and her cam­era

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