The Australian Under 23 National Team will line up at their first stage race of 2017 at the Toscana Terra di Ciclismo Eroica, in Italy April 28-29.
Oceania Champion Lucas Hamilton (VIC) and Jai Hindley (WA) who have both claimed podiums in Europe are joined by Robert Stannard (NSW), Michael Storer (WA), Harry Sweeny (QLD) and Australian Champion Sam Jenner (NSW).
Following six one day races across Italy and Belgium the team heads towards a busy May of stage racing as they look to continue their development on the world stage.
“It has been a very promising start to the season and this coupled with a strong and motivated group gelling very well for continued success,” said Cycling Australia’s National U23 Men’s Road Coach James Victor.
“As Lucas highlighted in previous post-race comments, he and Jai have podiumed but the entire team has communicated well throughout the racing and have all contributed to some strong and consistent performances,” Victor added.
The three-stage two-day race in Tuscany gets underway with a 14.6 kilometre team time trial with the stage starting with a downhill run before a long steady seven kilometre climb to the finish. The early morning TTT at 9:30AM forms part of a tough opening double stage day of racing.
Stage 1b on Friday afternoon heads from Cinigiano to Civitella Marittima covering a demanding course including dirt roads. As the race reaches 25 kilometres to go the peloton will tackle a near five-kilometre climb between Peruzzo and Sassofortino with a number of sections of up to 300 metres long reaching 20%
The most demanding stage of the race has been saved for last with Saturday’s 147.5 kilometre road stage between Foiano della Chiana and Buonconvento with nearly a third of the race on white dirt roads.
“With a 14.6 km difficult teams time trial and two road stages, all in two days it will provide another good development challenge for the group.
“Also 50km of strada bianca (white dirt roads) is mixed into the two road stages. This should provide another good couple of days of international under 23 racing before heading to France next week for the four day Rhone Alpes Isere Tour.”
Australian Under 23 National Team
Toscana Terra di Ciclismo Eroica
Stage 1a: April 28 Cinigiano (TTT) 14.6km
Stage 1b: April 28 Cinigiano – Civitella Marittima 125km
Stage 2: April 29 Foiano della Chiana – Buonconvento 147.5km