University of Melbourne student Cyrus Monk has been granted a coveted stagiaire position with Cannondale-Drapac. The 20-year-old will join the team from the first of August, competing in the Tour of Britain and various one-day races in Italy.
“I’m really looking forward to being a part of cycling at a WorldTour level,” said Monk. “After following cycling for so long, I’m excited to be in a position of the riders who I’ve looked up to.”
The stagiaire opportunity came as somewhat of a surprise to Monk, who was not expecting such an offer so early in his career.
“I was a little frustrated with my early races, and thought that I would need some more concrete results, but luckily my consistency was enough to catch Cannondale-Drapac’s attention,” Monk said.
Monk was one of the standout riders at the Jayco Herald Sun Tour in February. He has also clocked up a number of quality rides in 2017, including third place in the Oceania’s U23 individual time trial, and top 10 places at the Australian National Road Race Championships and the Oceania’s Road Championships. He is also the overall leader in the 2017 Towards Zero Victorian Road Series.
Monk currently rides for Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling’s Continental development team, Drapac Pat’s-Veg. A requirement from team owner Michael Drapac is that Drapac Pat’s Veg scholarship holders need to be pursuing either a degree or a similar education certification.
“Cyrus is an exemplar of the philosophy of holistic athletic development. From the perspective of any sporting code, he is an inspiration, and role-model, and we should be proud of him,” said Drapac.
“Drapac-Pat’s Veg has an extremely strong team this year, which has allowed me to profit, which I am grateful for. There’s always such a good atmosphere in our team, which stems from everyone having outside goals other than cycling. It’s unique in a team,” Monk said.
Monk also credits Melbourne University with allowing him both flexibility and focus in his cycling and his studies.
“The personal and professional development I’ve received from studying outweighs what I may have gained in full-time cycling instead,” Monk said.
Cyrus’s results extend far beyond the bike. The physiology student also won Melbourne University’s 2016 Male Athlete of the Year.
In the future Monk has his sights set on looking for results in tougher one day races such as the Amstel Gold Race. For now, he remains focused on completing his science degree and looking for options to work in muscle and exercise physiology research alongside a potential WorldTour contract.