Ian Stannard returns to Ineos Grenadiers as a sports director in 2023

The Englishman spent 10 years as a rider with the British team before retirement

Ian Stannard
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Ian Stannard is returning to Ineos Grenadiers, the team where he spent the final 10 years of his career as a rider, as a sports director in 2023. 

Stannard, along with Dajo Sanders, has been appointed by Ineos in a bid to bolster the team’s elite coaching group for the coming season. 

There has been an overhaul in the coaching setup at the British squad in the past couple of months, with longterm coaches Servais Knaven, Gabriel Rasch and Brett Lancaster all leaving the team. 

2022 was the first year that Ineos did not win a Grand Tour since 2014; despite a triumph at Paris-Roubaix and podiums at the Tour de France and Giro d'Italia, management felt a change was needed.

After his retirement from racing in 2020, Stannard joined Trinity Racing as a DS, cutting his teeth in management with some of the star riders who now make up the roster at Ineos. 

On his return to his former team, Stannard said: “It's very exciting to be coming back to Ineos Grenadiers. I had two great years and a steep learning curve at Trinity Racing which I think puts me in a good place to be stepping into a DS role. I’m looking forward to taking on new challenges with the Team, which has some of the young riders I worked with at Trinity. 

“It’s been great to see the way the team is building for the future and that is something I’m looking forward to being part of. It will be fun to be back working with some of my old teammates as well.” 

In his lengthy career, the British rider nicknamed “Yogi”, became renowned as being a tough and gritty rider who excelled in the spring classics. Stannard took two successive wins at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad in 2014 and 2015. 

The team's deputy principal, Rod Ellingworth, said that Stannard was the physical embodiment of Ineos’ racing philosophy. 

“It felt like it would only be a matter of time before Ian came back to work with us again. He has a wealth of knowledge to pass on, especially when I think about our Spring Classics and Grand Tour teams," Ellingworth said. 

"I’m looking forward to working with him and sharing time on the road with him again. If there’s anyone who embodies our ‘all in’ racing spirit, it’s Ian."

As well as Stannard, Ineos have recruited Sanders, a highly experienced coach who has competed at national and international level. 

Until recently, Sanders was a coach at WorldTour level with Team DSM. 

On the addition of Sanders, Ellingworth added: “Dajo will be an invaluable addition to our coaching team. He is highly experienced and comes with a unique mix of academic knowledge, personal racing experience and practical coaching insights. 

"While coaching at UCI World Tour level for the last four years, he has twice successfully coached a rider to the podium of a Grand Tour as well as multiple Grand Tour stage victories.”

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Tom Thewlis

Tom is a News and Features Writer at Cycling Weekly, and previously worked in communications at Oxford Brookes University. He has reported from a wide range of races and events including the Tour de France and World Championships.