Aussie hopes maiden race win is a catalyst for world championship success
Mark Renshaw is hopeful that the maiden race win of his career in this week's Tour of Qatar is just the start of a highly successful 2011 season.
In this interview following his victory over compatriot Heinrich Haussler (Garmin-Cervélo) and Italian Daniele Bennati (Leopard Trek), Renshaw explains how his team's focus was forced to shift from Mark Cavendish following the Manxman's second crash in as many events. The Australian told Cyclingnews he was "very happy" to take the stage win in Al Kharaitiyat which cemented his overall lead.
The Tour of Qatar is just the start of another busy season for the 28-year-old. By May, Renshaw will again be guiding Cavendish through the Giro d'Italia before it's onto the Tour de Suisse and Tour de France, although he admits he is hopeful of being able to collect a few results for himself along the way.
Renshaw's biggest solo focus will be on leading the Australian outfit for the world championships in Denmark in late September however, he knows that some of his toughest competition will come from his own HTC Highroad teammate Matthew Goss.
1st World Road Championships 2011
1st World Track Championships, Madison 2005, 2008
1st Points competition, Tour de France 2011
20 stage wins, Tour de France 2008-11
9 stage wins, Giro d’Italia, 2008-11
1st Points competition, Vuelta a España 2010
4 stages wins, Vuelta a España 2010
1st Milan-San Remo 2009
1st Scheleprijs 2007, 2008, 2011
2nd Points competition, Tour de France 2009, 2010
Looking ahead to 2012
It will be hard for Mark Cavendish to top his 2011 season, winning the green jersey in the Tour de France and the rainbow stripes of World Champion – but Cavendish has big dreams, and they’re centred around July, riding the Tour de France and then the Olympic road race in London. Not that the rest of the peloton will be making it easy for him – and it will be interesting to see whether the move from HTC to Sky will affect his racing. Whatever happens, there are sure to be the usual fireworks!