After more than 120 kilometres of work on or close to the front of the main , defending World Champion Mark Cavendish opted to quit today’s Worlds race. The British rider had said that he had no chance of winning on such a hilly course and instead he opted to do his share for his teammates early on before pulling out, saying afterwards he was “satisfied.”
“The race is going as I expected, in a sense it hasn’t started yet but you can see the big players are beginning to make their moves,” Cavendish said.
Asked why the British had been so keen to control the race early on, Cavendish said, “that’s just the way we’ve always been in every team I’m in. There’s no point in sitting the race, you’ve got to take the race on to try and win the race.” His role, early on, he said, had been to help work for his team-mates who had worked so hard in the previous World’s and other races for him.
As for possible winners, Cavendish said he “hoped a Briton. But there’s too many other favourites to name.” As for his predictions for the final result, he said “a group of riders” were most likely to decide the finish.
Asked about what his options were for the future, given his comments that he wanted to leave Sky, and when he could reveal something about next year, Cavendish said “when I am able to.” He said he had no idea if the time that would take would be weeks, months.