Specialized Tarmac SL2 - Allan Davis


Every now and then I find a bicycle that not only has a special story, but which also has an emotional meaning for me. That’s certainly true of this Quickstep Specialized Tarmac SL2 that is part of our Flandrien Hotel collection. It was ridden by my good friend and Australian cycling legend Allan Davis. 

Allan Davis is a champion in every sense of the word. Known for his strong work ethic and sprinting ability, he started competitive cycling at the age of 10, and turned professional in 2002. 

Over the following twelve years he amassed more than 30 professional wins riding for teams such as Mapei, ONCE, Discovery, Quickstep, Astana and GreenEdge. To put his results into context, more than 85% of cyclists in the professional peloton never stand on the podium in a major UCI World Tour event.

Allan had podiums in the World Championships Road Race and Milan San Remo. And in 2008 while racing for the Quickstep squad he won the Tour Downunder on this beautiful Specialized bicycle.

It’s had a few minor components changes, but is pretty much as he raced it around the roads of Adelaide in South Australia. A cool detail is the special Team-Issue Campagnolo Record components, with red logos on the 10 speed Ultra-Shift levers (normally white).

A champion is someone who has, in their own right, achieved great things and Allan Davis has certainly done so. But I believe that a true champion is more than someone who wins in their own right.

True champions are capable of developing other champions. And that requires some special abilities – something that Allan Davis has demonstrated again and again.

A champion who becomes a coach and mentor is inspired to share their own deep experience and knowledge. They are curious, open, humble empathetic and generous.

I have been coached by Allan, and over the years I have been incredibly impressed by his willingness to give to those athletes whom he has guided and supported.

To have this bike in my collection means a lot to me. It reminds me every day of what being a champion really means.