French Lyon players kicked off their pre-season campaign with some mountain biking in their schedules.
7h15, in Tignes, all is calm. It is the time of day when the clouds are still stuck to the summits, the hour when late rising skiiers are making their way quickly to the glacier: in four hours it will already be too late, the snow will have started to melt; even the lake seems to be asleep, barely disturbed by the falling melted snow.
7h30, still no OL players in sight. The mornings physical session has been cancelled, the OL squad will discover the sumptuous panorama offered by the mountains in summer on bikes. 8h30, each player has to choose, sometimes with scepticism and sometimes with joy, like Rémy Vercoutre, the machine that will be making them suffer, « during 1 hour for the quickest, 2h30 for the rest » laughs Emmanuel Orhant. While Miralem Pjanic and Frédéric Piquionne ride around doing wheelies, Ederson tries desperately and in vain to put on his helmet much to the delight of Sidney Govou : « that helmet really has a problem with you. »
The trail starts by going downhill, through the forest and along a river that Patrick Collot almost falls in to. It appears obvious thet Cris has been practising his mountain biking during the holidays! The second part of the ride is much more hilly, which doesn’t worry Claude Puel, who finishes in first place accompanied by Nicolas Seguin. The Doc didn’t lie: two and a quarter hours.
Miralem Pjanic’s opinion : « Personnally, I enjoy biking, I like going quickly and being in front. It was quite calm. It was almost all downhill. It’s a nice gentle start to the training camp but we knwo things are going to be a lot more difficult afterwards. »
At the end of the afternoon, the group will be in surroundings that they control better: on a football pitch with a ball at their feet.