Ian Stannard will ride as a stagiaire for the T-Mobile team for three upcoming stage races. The British Cycling Olympic Academy rider joins compatriot Mark Cavendish at the Tour of Denmark that starts today.

Stannard will ride the Tour Denmark, Tour of Ireland and the Tour of Britain for the German team, and has an option to join them at the 3-Lander-Tour der Sparkassen in Germany just before the world championships.

Stannard?s coach Rod Ellingworth said; ?it?s a great opportunity for him. There?s nothing definite for him next year, they just want to see how he can go. But there are places there next year.?

Stannard?s Academy team mate, Ben Swift is set to begin his stagiaire contract with Barloworld on August 9 at the GP Citta di Camiore in Italy.

According to Ellingworth, Roger Hammond put in a good word for Stannard, while Cavendish said he had great potential. ?The reputation of the Academy and work ethic of the lads has also helped,? Ellingworth added.

Both Stannard and Swift will return to the Academy base in Quaratta, Italy between races as they kook towards the world chamnpionships in Stuttgart this September.

Four second year juniors from BC?s Olympic Development Programme will also visit the base in early September to get a feel for life, and what is expected of them, in the under 23 ranks.

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