Mark Cavendish aiming to return at Tour of California after Milan-San Remo crash

Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) is targeting a return to action at the Tour of California following his heavy crash in the finale of Milan-San Remo last month.

The Manxman has endured an ill-starred beginning to the 2018 season, as crashes forced him out of the Abu Dhabi Tour, Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo. He sustained an ankle injury and a fractured rib in the most recent incident after flipping over some traffic furniture at speed. 

Cavendish will hope to kick-start his build-up to the Tour de France by returning to the peloton at the Tour of California, which takes place from May 13-19. He will then seek to add to his running tally of 30 stage victories at the Tour de France.

"I'd like at least to make California. That's another six weeks away, so I should be all right," Cavendish told the Observer. "I don't know how my fitness will be but I should be all right. At least if I can come back by then I should be all right for the Tour."

Cavendish told the Observer that he has not yet resumed training on the road, but has been riding on the turbo trainer for up to an hour. He spent part of the last week in Belgium receiving treatment and he was among the former Quick-Step riders who attended a dinner to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the company's involvement in professional cycling on Friday evening.

"I'm pretty happy to be back on the turbo trainer after a crash like that. I've been riding through the pain to do it," said Cavendish, who confirmed that he will not compete in this month's Commonwealth Games, his second time in succession to miss the event through injury.

"I'm proud to be from the Isle of Man. I don't usually get to ride for the Island and I had to miss it last time, so I was looking forward to it. I know we have a strong team, so it would have been good."

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