Stannard for Worlds
Rob Stannard is an 18-year old that looks like he has completed nine Giros and has been racing the World Tour since 2004. His calves are of an enormous girth and he has shown their strength on numerous occasions throughout 2017. The Australian Kiwi that sort of resides from "Sidnee" is a down to earth switched on young man that I believe is a red-hot chance in this year's Under 23 World's Road Race.
I've never seen Rob compete but based on his palmarès and comments from other riders, he is a genuine all-rounder. One results stands out for me, stage 3 of Rhone Alps Tour. This is one of the toughest races a young rider can complete - it's over an unforgiving course, you're racing French men, it's traditionally terrible weather and it's run through narrow technical roads. Upon talking to his teammate after this year's race he noted Rob's performance. "Rob was riding the front during the stage with another teammate and my self before he disappeared into the bunch and before we knew it, Rob was lining up on the back of the sprint trains at 5 km to go" - Rob won that stage.
Rob's spent the majority of the year tonking kilometres on the front of the bunch for his talented team mates but when he has had the opportunity, he has gained personal success - a man of all trades. I was lucky enough the meet Rob a couple of months ago and the thing that stood out for me was his mature head. Even though it's on one of the youngest bodies in the peloton he has a very grounded and grown up mentality - he knows what he wants, what he has to do to get there and is willing to put in the yards to get it done. The course suits the punchy Sydney boy with many lumps and bumps before an expected reduced bunch gallop into the finish.
I'm excited about the prospect of Rob's success at this year's World Championships and wish him and the team all the best.
See you back at the social club,