Feature: CHS Review by Paceline


Eight Paceline riders returned to the Costa Blanca region to base themselves at Cycling Holiday Spain (CHS)

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Feature: CHS Review by Paceline
A review by Gareth Thomas

Following on from last years training camp, a group of 8 of Paceline riders returned to the Costa Blanca region, using Nozad Nawras’ run business, Cycling Holiday Spain (CHS), as our base.


Last year, we were self-catering. This year, we opted for the opposite. CHS is fronted by Nozad, who runs the show with the help of his partner Eva, and his brother Jubi run an absolutely fantastic service, aimed at providing a professional level team camps. While some would argue it is overkill for amateur riders, it can’t be denied it’s a welcome luxury.

Located less than an hours drive from Alicante airport in Callosa d’en Sarrià, the proximity to the climbs is fantastic as pictured. Located at the bottom of Tarbena (flowing descent off the iconic Col d’Rates climb) and 20k from the start of the Aitana (cat 1 climb), you couldn’t wish for a better spot if you’re here to climb mountainous terrain.

First things first; Nozad met us at the airport, and had our eight bikes transported to the base in Callosa, just less than an hour away. We were then picked up (as we needed a second vehicle), and transferred too. All our luggage and bike boxes were at the base when we arrived, and even though we arrived about 21:30, they had still done us a dinner which was very welcoming!


There is a garage with space for 12+ bikes on racks, numerous bike stands to put your bikes together and numerous top-end hire bikes. The tools he has to hand rival that of a mechanics workshop, which impressed me – I really didn’t need to take my tools with me and add to my luggage weight as the place had everything I needed.

The games room is a great place to unwind after a ride with your mates. With a pool table, darts, a Playstation 3, gym, tennis, basketball net, or a swimming pool next to a gorgeous sauna, there’s plenty for everyone.


If the weather is rubbish (unlikely!), or you’re not a fan of the sun, then head inside and watch television or a wide selection of movies to choose from on a massive projected home cinema system. The wi-fi can be slow at times, but relatively it’s pretty good considering there have been 11 people connected, with some streaming and making video calls.

With temperatures being so variable in the morning and night, the base has several large furnaces, both gas and wood burners, in addition to the central heating. This is brilliant, and allows us to laze around in shorts and a t-shirt and keep at a very cosy temperature.

Laundry is easily done for you if placed in the dirty linen basket, and in the sun here, your clothes will dry very quickly. Not only will they wash it, but we had it hung and folded too.


A standard day
8:30: Breakfast. We’ve been treated to porridge with fresh fruits followed by poached eggs on toast all week, carb loading before a days tough riding. There’s also plenty of tea and coffee on offer.

09:30: Nozad will go through the route for the day on a big projector, detailing the route, climbs, profile and local weather conditions. The climbs locally range from 20-60 minutes, so they are perfect for threshold training.

10:00: We head out for rides varying between 50-100 miles, dependant on what we want. Nozad stocks the support car up with more than enough water, gels, bars, bananas, oranges, electrolyte tablets for everyone, and we need it. At the base of climbs and the top, we regroup and can get gilets in or out of the car – extremely handy! Throughout the ride he buzzes back and forth providing photographs and videos, as well as encouragement to all riders. He also has loads of tools and tubes for mechanicals, and has space to take bikes and riders.


13:30 – 16:30: We get home, where Jubi (Nozad’s brother) will provide us with a protein shake as soon as we get through the door, with lunch all prepared. This usually consists of a jacket potato, noodles, and a selection of beans, tuna, egg mayo, potato mayo, salad and numerous condiments.
Afternoon-Evening: Take advantage of the facilities on site to unwind, socialise, and also analyse your ride for the day.

18:00: Massage; there are 3 masseuses present. Eva, Diana and Sunny. The legs get a full work down and ready for the next day.

19:30: Three-course dinner. Vegetable soups to start, with lots of bread, followed by a variety of of meals (here on their website), and finished with dessert.



Five star service
Towards the end of the holiday, Eva had compiled all the videos, GoPro vids from motorpacing, and still images she had taken into 2-3 separate video montages, which was a really great touch, to which we were very grateful for.

Throughout all the gaps in the day at base, Nozad, Eva and Jubi are making sure we are alright, offering tea, coffee, snacks. They wait on us and clean up after us. They really can’t be faulted. Although accommodation is referred to as ‘base’, it isn’t faceless. The villa is decorated to give a homely feel and Nozad, Eva and Jubi are all so welcoming and passionate about providing, riders need not worry about a thing all week, other than concentrate on riding and getting the most from the camp.


In closing…
When I asked the seven others if they would return, the answer was a unanimous ‘yes’. Not having to hire transport, provide and cook food, worry about laundry, as well as the perks of a support car, massages and all other facilities, the whole experience focuses heavily on maximising recovery so riders can focus on their training, which is what the week is about.

What Nozad and his team at CHS have created is tailored towards recreational club cyclists who wish for a luxury holiday, or competitive riders who wish to focus on improving their fitness – an entirely positive time, and well worth the money!





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