Cycling: Disgruntled Cavendish leaves Sky and breaks up 'British super team'
World No 1 sprint cyclist is tired of playing second fiddle to Wiggins and admits to feeling 'kind of lost'
Cycling's dream team is breaking up. Mark Cavendish, a key component in Team Sky, last night made the shock announcement that he wishes to leave Britain's premier cycling team less than a year after he signed for the squad.
It means the world's No 1 sprinter is no longer willing to play second fiddle to this year's Tour de France winner, Bradley Wiggins.
When the 27-year-old Cavendish signed for Sky at the start of 2012, the team's stated aim was to go for both the yellow and the green jerseys in the Tour de France.
Instead, Cavendish's wishes were sidelined as the team focused on the yellow – so successfully, in fact, that they took both the number one and two spots in the Tour with Wiggins and Chris Froome.
"We had this idea that we could have this British super team that could win stages and dominate," Cavendish said at a press conference in Ipswich yesterday, ahead of the Tour of Britain.
"Dave [Brailsford, general manager of Team Sky] sold me the idea last year but for some reason it hasn't worked out like that. It's difficult to do."
The reigning world road race champion insisted: "I've been very happy at Sky. I don't want to compromise Sky and hopefully Sky won't compromise me."
Cavendish's season has seen him win three stages of the Tour de France, becoming the race's most successful ever sprinter ahead of 1950s star Andre Darrigade, as well taking two stages of the Tour of Italy. In total he has 12 wins this season, as well as a staggering 23 Tour stage wins, the fourth-highest total taken by any rider.
"I've got an ambition of winning as many stages as I can in the Tour de France and I'd kind of like to be somewhere I can do that," he said.
"Dave's stated ambitions are not really involved with sprinters or the green jersey or stage wins so it puts me in a position where I'm kind of lost. Instead of kicking and screaming I hope we can find an amicable solution about it and go on and everything be the best for both parties."
Cavendish still has two years to run on his contract, although Omega Pharma Quick Step, BMC and Katusha are all rumoured to be intersted in buying it out. Should he go to Omega, Brian Holm his longstanding director and friend from HTC, Cavendish's previous team, would be one key reason for him to head there.
Latest in Sport
Radamel Falcao exclusive: Forward says joining Manchester United is a 'dream come true'
Transfer deadline day: The best memes and tweets, featuring Radamel Falcao, Javier Hernandez and Bart Simpson
Arsenal transfer news: Ray Parlour urges Arsene Wenger to make late move for Edinson Cavani
WWE Raw preview: Will John Cena continue to defy the threat of Brock Lesnar?
Danny Welbeck to Arsenal: Arsene Wenger pictured in Rome as club close in on Manchester United striker for £17m
- 1 Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
- 2 Emma Watson on Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak: 'Even worse than seeing women's privacy violated is reading the comments'
- 3 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 4 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 5 Mexican woman becomes world’s 'oldest person' at 127
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain
Negotiable: Randstad Education Sheffield: Primary PPA Teachers required for wo...
£21000 - £35000 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Maths teachers requir...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Executive Assistant/Event...
£23760 - £33600 per annum + pre 12 week AWR : Randstad Education Manchester Se...