By Gregor Brown
Mark Cavendish will take his Milan-Sanremo-winning form to Poland for the World Track Championships this week. The Columbia-Highroad star was a surprise inclusion on the British team, especially considering he previously stated he would no longer race on the track. But the 23-year-old attributed his finishing kick to his background on the boards after his win in Italy last week, and will take on the scratch race on Thursday and Saturday's Madison as part of his road preparation.
"The reason I am so fast is because I have the leg speed. I get the leg speed from the track. You see me here after I win, but you don't see the fine details I put into my training and lifestyle to be able to be here," said the Columbia rider after he won the 298-kilometre Classic in Italy.
Cavendish vowed to give up the track after being the only Briton to come away from the Beijing Olympics without a medal. He left the Games bitter after he and his partner, Bradley Wiggins, failed to contend in the Madison. But he was lured back to the boards with an eye on honing his form.
"I don't benefit financially or in terms of being remembered in cycling from racing on the track. If you look at the fact that it is going to benefit my road career by keeping me fast, then it makes sense."