Giro stage winner Alex Dowsett tells CW what life has been like post Giro.
It’s a week and a half since I rolled into Brescia to complete my first Grand Tour. The Giro was an emotional rollercoaster, to say the least.
We toasted Movistar’s performance after the last stage and I was asked what Spanish word I had learnt during the race. I’d learnt plenty but only one sprang to mind – descanso – which means rest. That was what I needed next.
It’s difficult to put into words exactly what the race felt like. It was all kind of a blur. After day six, I stopped counting down the stages and just let myself go with it. You lose yourself in the race. The only information from the outside world I was getting was from speaking with family and friends. The race just takes over. It’s all you think about.
I suppose it’s not dissimilar to how a time trial feels while you’re doing it. It is quite unpleasant, you’re in a world of hurt, both physically and mentally, but you can’t give up. Only this is three weeks long. When you finish, all those feelings subside and the sense of satisfaction and achievement takes over, then you want to do it again. It’s a vicious circle!
The week off has been bliss. At the beginning, I wanted to keep riding – that fear you’re going to lose form in the click of a finger. Two bikeless days in and the legs were tightening up. There’s been plenty of eating, catching up with friends, the odd night out and an epic wedding (not mine).
But it’s time to get back on it. I’m not the kind of rider to achieve big and then chill out for the rest of the year.
I have a Smithfield Nocturne title to regain, a national title to defend and a World Championship to get selected for. Thank you for all the support during the Giro on the social networks, it really put a smile on my face!
Since this article appeared in the June 06 issue of Cycling Weekly Alex placed 2nd at the Smithfield Nocturne and successfully defended his National 25 title.