Saturday 07 January 2017 - 19:01

Enric Mas: “Excited for my pro debut”

Enric Mas: “Excited for my pro debut”

Our Spanish neo-pro talks about his first years in cycling, his best results so far and the expectations ahead of his first race with Quick-Step Floors Cycling Team.

I was born 22 years ago, in Artà. I'm sure not many people have heard of it, as it's just a small town in Mallorca, but if you ever have the chance to visit it don't miss it, as the landscape is breathtaking and you can find some really great roads for training.

When I was just a kid, I wasn't at all into cycling, basketball being my main focus back then, but everything changed in 2006. A friend of mine kept inviting me for a ride, and one day I finally said yes. I was awed by what it meant to ride a bike, to enjoy the scenery and feel both pain and pleasure at the same time. It was totally different from basketball; there, you played against another team, but here it was just you and your bike.

That same year I joined Club Ciclista Artanenc and stayed there for two seasons, before going to mainland Spain, where I rode for a really good club based in Valencia. I spent one year there and then I joined the Fundacion Contador team, where I got to learn many things and meet Alberto, who is my idol. I raced for Fundacion Contador two years and the memories I have from that period are indelible. Then, in my last year in the U23 ranks, I got the opportunity to ride for Klein Constantia, one of the best teams in the world for young riders, and I can't say how important was this step in my development.

Besides having a well-structured international calendar, another thing that pleased me was that Klein Constantia was like a family; I got along with all my teammates and lived many great moments which I will always cherish. One of these was winning the Tour de Savoie; 2016 was an unbelievable year, with many top results, but the one in France stands out as the best, because is such a prestigious race and everything clicked for me there. I felt excellent throughout the week, was always comfortable on the climbs and I could notice how much I've improved in the time trial. All these led to me winning this fantastic race and making the step to the World Tour.

Joining Quick-Step Floors Cycling was a dream come true. In October, when we gathered in Brussels for two days and I got to meet all my teammates it was something that really left me speechless, even now I can't find the words to tell you how I felt and what emotions I had when I realized where I was and what was happening. Just rubbing shoulders with all these great riders and being aware that I'm part of one of the best teams in the world means a lot for me and shows me that hard work pays off.

Next week, I'll be making my debut for Quick-Step Floors at the Tour Down Under. Just to think of it gives me huge joy: my first pro race will be a World Tour one! This is for what I'm preparing here in Calpe, where I'm training with my teammates to make sure everything will be in its place for my first race, before traveling to Australia.

Today, on my birthday, I went for a two-hour ride and after coming back to the hotel and going to the massage, I watched the game of my favourite team, Real Madrid. I'm a big fan of this team ever since I was just a few years old and my uncle took me to the Santiago Bernabeu. He too is a big fan of Los Blancos and told me that on the day I was born, Real Madrid won 5-0 against Barcelona. Today, it was 5-0 again, but this time against Granada. Was a nice present for my birthday, together with the small celebration the team had for me in store.

That's it for now. I'll continue my training and count the days left until I will sport the Quick-Step Floors Cycling Team kit in a race. Of course, I'm not starting the Tour Down Under with any big goals; all that I hope is to have a good race, some luck and be there for the team. 2017 is going to be a season in which I'll take it one step at a time and continue my learning process, and Australia is the first chapter of what I hope to be a nice story.

That's it for now. I'll continue my training and count the days left until I will sport the Quick-Step Floors Cycling Team kit in a race. Of course, I'm not starting the Tour Down Under with any big goals; all that I hope is to have a good race, some luck and be there for the team. 2017 is going to be a season in which I'll take it one step at a time and continue my learning process, and Australia is the first chapter of what I hope to be a nice story.

 

Photo credit: ©BrakeThrough Media





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