The Volta ao Algarve is the first important stage race this season. In the first showdown you don't really know where you stand in comparison to your rivals. But I already felt well on the first stage. That I was able to be in at the finish on the second stage, makes me very satisfied. Especially since I came to the start here directly from the training camp.
I hope that all of you have started out the New Year as well as I did. For the first time I celebrated New Year's Eve in Switzerland. However, the party was not at my house but at that of my almost-neighbor, Marcel Kittel. In the winter I am underway as much as in the summer. I have not been home since the beginning of December.
I have been back from Ethiopia for a week now. During the five days, I had the chance to dive into a completely new world for me. I consciously took some time to reflect and process on my experiences and impressions.
The last race of the season is history, and it is time to take stock. In the last week I did some intensive team building with my team Bora-hansgrohe in Lienz, Austria. Those days were good for the whole team. In addition to a lot of meetings, where we of course looked towards the next season, we were also athletically active, including downhill. But don't worry, nobody got injured and we had a lot of fun.
Today is the start of the six-day Gree-Tour of Guangxi. I am especially happy to be here at the start. Not just because as a land, China is always a real adventure, but also because after the many throwbacks this season, I have now worked myself into a performance level that makes me confident for this race.