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Cavendish finalist for BBC award

A jubliant Mark Cavendish (HTC-Columbia) after winning his first Tour de France stage of 2010

A jubliant Mark Cavendish (HTC-Columbia) after winning his first Tour de France stage of 2010 (Image credit: AFP)

HTC-Columbia sprinter Mark Cavendish has been chosen as one of 10 contenders for the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year award. The 25-year-old overcame a difficult start to the season to claim 12 wins, including five stages of the Tour de France and three individual stages at the team time trial at the Vuelta a España.

In only his fourth professional season, Cavendish has now won stages of all three Grand Tours as well as the 2009 Milan-San Remo classic. He has a career 15 stages of the Tour de France, five in the Giro d'Italia and three in the Vuelta.

It is the second year in a row that Cavendish has made the short list for the BBC's SPOTY award. The last cyclist to claim the honours was Chris Hoy after the 2008 Olympic Games.