I am team coach/manager for a new Cyclo-Cross Development Team. We recently had a pre-season team building event and training camp in west Wales. The weather was great and so was the scenery. The activities weren’t bad either with us even finding time for some white water kayaking. It was useful for me to see how coaches from another sport deliver their sessions and fun too.

The highlight of the trip for me and I think the riders too was a trip to the beach, not to relax but actually for a coaching session on how to ride on sand. One of the National Trophy Cyclo-Cross rounds in Irvine, Scotland, this year includes riding on sand dunes and a section of beach. What better way to prepare for this than go and ride the real thing in training.

Though some local knowledge we managed to find out that Poppit Sands near Cardigan offered a perfect venue; soft sand, hard packed tidal sand and of course sand dunes. For a couple of hours we tried it all and I was amazed by the progression all the riders made in their riding techniques in this short time.

We also had a bit more fun getting the riders to re-enact the opening sequence to the film Chariots of Fire – they were all too young to know the film themselves though, but enjoyed seeing the video set to the iconic Vangelis music track.

Can’t wait to see them all use there new skills at any CX course that has sand and in Irvine during October…..