International stage awaits rider

Zac Shaw is in an under-19 Australian team to contest the UCI Juniors Track World Championships in New Zealand.

A DOMINANT national campaign has landed Colac district cyclist Zac Shaw a chance to represent Australia.

Cycling Australia officials have picked Shaw, 16, as a bottom-age rider in an eight-man under-19 squad which will contest the UCI Juniors Track World Championships in New Zealand later this year.

The teenager said he expected to contest the one-kilometre time trial, team sprint and the keirin events.

It will be the first time Shaw, the son of Elliminyt’s Cameron and Anna, has competed on the international stage.

“I’m pretty excited about the selection, to get the chance to represent Australia… there are no words for it really,” he said.

“It will be the first time I’ve competed outside of Australia.”

The selection followed Shaw’s dominant performance at the 2012 Subaru Cycling Australia National Track Championships in Adelaide last month.

He teamed up with fellow Victorians Emmerson Harwood and Jacob Schmid to win the under-19 team sprint andhe joined Jack Cummings, Evan Hall and Alexander Morgan to win the 4000m Bill Young teams pursuit.

But it was his record-breaking gold medal in the national one-kilometre time trial that made cycling officials take notice.

The effort all but locked Shaw in for a spot in the Australian team, and the young talent now has bigger goals in mind when he travels to Invercargill in August.

“I always thought I’d be a chance because of the nationals but it was good to find out I’d made the team for certain,” Shaw said.

“At the start of the year my goal was to win at the Aussie titles, this has just topped it off – I could win a world title,” he said.

“I’ll hopefully be going there to win.”

Shaw will join his seven under-19 men’s teammates, and Australia’s four female cyclists, at training camps in Adelaide in April and July.

He will also stick to a Cycling Australia program while training at home.

“I’m just looking forward to competing in a different country,” Shaw said.

“I’ll hope to learn as much as I can against the world’s best.”

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