Such a big fuss is made about the The Volta a Portugal that people forget there are other good and important races on the calendar. As ever, we put all our eggs in the one basket. I never really understood this.

We’ve been training hard for ages now. Real killer stuff up to 6 hours in length.

Recently in training we had 46ºC and I felt utterly rotten, it was like sitting in front of a hair drier for three hours. It’s cooled down recently and I sincerely hope we don’t get temperatures too far above 40ºC.

I’m quite slim, not super skinny, but hopefully not the fattest cyclist on the team either!

I’ve had very little to motivate me since the end of March and it was cool to feel my motivation picking up.

My team at the Volta presentation.

This motivation carries across all areas and work seems easy. I just want to work. When motivation is low, it’s terrible, especially as a cyclist taking part in some crap, dangerous races with €100 as a prize I often wonder: If it isn’t for my ego (I’m not particularly ego motivated), if I’ve achieved all that I can within the constraints imposed upon me, if it’s not the opportunity of a fatter contract, why am I doing it?

Key to my motivation is interest and that’s not being courted either. My luck is that I like riding the bike and I keep my mind active in other areas.

The Volta this year is pretty much a clone of the recent previous editions. It’s going to be one hard fortnight and I hope we come across the yellow jersey late into the race as we have only a pair of guys (myself included) to drill it on the front.

The race is as big as it was last year, loads of media and celebrities and that. A lot of new sponsors are also abounding as well as the involvement of central government. It’s quite interesting.

Many sponsors are upping investment and pledging their support. We’ll see if this filters down as far as the humble cyclist.

Tomorrow is a 2.2km prologue, I’ll take it easy and play safe.