As you read this, Rob Licciardo of Licciardos Railway Bar and Grill fame will be in Lausanne, Switzerland. He will have just participated in the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Series on August 31 and we assume the competition was fierce.
Mornington Peninsula Magazine spoke with him just before he headed off to the home of Swiss cheese, lakes, cowbells and medieval quarters to find out a bit about his love of fitness, food and competing in triathlon. With more than 20 years of triathlon experience behind him, this much-loved Mount Eliza chef/restaurateur has always had extra energy to spare and doesn’t appear to be slowing down. Rob explains: “I’ve always been very active and weaved my exercise around my cooking. I’ve participated in four world titles and came sixth in my age group — 60-64 — in the Gold Coast Triathlon Series. I’ve also participated in multiple state triathlon titles. The triathlon course in Lausanne is a strength course. We’ll ride around Lake Geneva and there will be a few hills, unlike the Gold Coast which was predominantly flat. I won the Victorian qualifier to be part of the World Series. It’s very exciting. I’ll be in Switzerland for two weeks.”
For those of you who know nothing about triathlon, it’s basically an activity that combines swimming, cycling and running in the one event. Athletes in the Olympics swim 1500m, ride 40km and run 10km. Rob will be taking part in a 750m swim, 20km cycle and a 5km run. He continues: “I’ve usually finished within the top 15 in every race I’ve run. I don’t do anything special diet-wise while training. I love my roasts, steak sandwiches and carbohydrates. But I love salads too. When you are exercising a lot, you have to refuel. Balance is the key. Restaurant life is incredibly busy and keeps you on your toes. You are always moving. It’s an endurance test in itself. I run nearly every day and cycle three days a week as well. I just love to move.”
Rob started cooking at 17 when he began preparing breakfasts for his mates before they went surfing. He continues: “I was always surfing back then. I’d plonked an old house on farming land out the back of Bells Beach and that’s what we did.” He left Sandringham Technical School, did an apprenticeship in Geelong and has been the familiar face of one of the best eateries in Mount Eliza ever since. Licciardos has been serving up stellar food since 1988.
Keep your eyes peeled for the October edition of Mount Eliza Village Magazine to see how Rob fared in his age group at the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Series.