Unfinished business for Cavendish on the track, says Salzwedel
British Cycling endurance coach Heiko Salzwedel has said that Mark Cavendish is completely committed to racing on the track in the omnium at the Rio 2016 Olympics, saying that he has “unfinished business” after being the sole British rider not to win a medal on the boards in Beijing seven years ago.
Cavendish will line up alongside Bradley Wiggins in the Revolution Series event in Derby this weekend in a bid to score qualifying points for the winter’s Track World Cup events, the first step towards earning a berth in Brazil next year.
“I was very surprised and very proud when we met and discovered how determined he is,” Salzwedel told The Telegraph.
"He has some unfinished business back from 2008 in his mind. He really wants to go to Rio with the track team and wants to go 100 per cent focused on the omnium. He doesn't come in saying 'we'll see how it goes,' it's clear in his mind, his focus and priorities. The Olympics is where Mark wants to be in 12 months’ time.”
The weekend’s event provides a useful dress rehearsal for Cavendish’s preparations – “the timing between the Tour de France and Olympic Games next year and this year's Tour and Revolution Series are exactly the same,” Salzwedal pointed out – though Ed Clancy apparently remains the favourite to take Great Britain’s slot in in the omnium in Rio.
“I cannot really comment on Cavendish right now, I can only speculate which is not my area,” Salzwedal said.
No Etixx-Quick Step move for Jurgen Van den Broeck
Out of contract at Lotto Soudal, Jurgen Van den Broeck is looking for a new team for season 2016 and beyond but is so far finding more doors closing than opening. Orica-GreenEdge were initially interested in the current Belgian time trial champion but withdrew its interest for financial reasons. Now Etixx-Quick Step team manager Patrick Lefevere has also announced he isn't interested in signing Van den Broeck.
"It is not a matter of wanting money, but we have chosen for the team to focus on young riders," said Lefevere according to Het Nieuwsblad.
Joining Etixx-Quick Step in 2016 is 22-year-old Davide Martinelli along with the Colombian duo of Fernando Gaviria and Rodrigo Contreras, while 19-year-old Laurens De Plus is rumoured to also be joining the team, reflecting a youthful transfer approach for the upcoming season.
Mouris to Drapac, Wippert to Cannondale-Garmin?
A day after it was announced Jens Mouris was moving on from Orica-GreenEdge after four seasons with the Australian WorldTour team, Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf reports the 35-year-old will ride in the red kit of Drapac in 2016. Mouris would join compatriot Peter Konig at the Pro-Continental team next season although the team appears to be losing sprinter Wouter Wippert to Cannondale-Garmin. Wippert, who turns 25 today, won the final stage of the Tour Down Under earlier this year and also impressed at the Tour of California where he had three top-three stage finishes.