The Manxman was forced to miss the World Championships in Richmond due to his injuries and preferred to undergo surgery now and miss the end of season races, rather than delay his rehabilitation. Cavendish was due to ride the Abu Dhabi Tour in early October after becoming an ambassador for the race. His injuries will also end the chance of him riding the new London Six Day track event scheduled for mid-October.
Etixx–QuickStep said Cavendish underwent surgery on Monday morning on his left shoulder to fix a partial tear of his left AC ligament he incurred after hitting a stationary car on the side of the road during six of the Tour of Britain. It was the opposite shoulder to the one damaged at the Tour de France in 2014 when he also needed surgery due to his injuries.
“It has been a very difficult decision. However, after 10 days from the crash, I still had pain and I couldn’t lift or pull much weight. I tried to ride my bike a few days ago on the road, but I could not put any power out by pulling on the handlebars. The surgery was necessary to avoid any problems in the near future,” Cavendish said about choosing to have surgery.
“I’m so disappointed to end the season like this. The UCI World Championships and Abu Dhabi Tour were two important objectives for the end of my season. But there’s nothing I can do now except take a period of rest, and then start with intensive rehab. I wish Etixx–QuickStep and the British National Team all the best for the next races.”
Cavendish’s shoulder injury could also mark the end of his time with the Etixx-QuickStep after manager Patrick Lefevere told Cyclingnews that there is a 90% chance that he will leave the Belgian-based team. Lefevere revealed that he has not met with Cavendish’s agent since the Tour de France.
It seems the MTN-Qhubeka team is the favourite to sign Cavendish but details of possible funding and Cavendish’s role in the team have still to be confirmed.