Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) is set to start Paris-Tours on Sunday after recovering from a recent bout of illness. It will be Cavendish’s final race before leaving for the UCI Road World Championships in Doha, Qatar, where he will line up as one of the favourites for the rainbow jersey.
Cavendish had spent almost a week off the bike after he picked up an intestinal infection towards the end of September. Dimension Data are set to make an announcement on Cavendish’s participation in the French one-day race on Sunday morning but have indicated to Cyclingnews that he will start.
He was originally meant to ride Paris-Bourges last week but opted to spend longer on his recovery instead. At the Münsterland Giro, directuer sportif Rolf Aldag told Radsport-News.com, "He was supposed to - and wanted to - start here. But at the GP Beghelli he abandoned, totally empty, after 70 km. Then he went to the doctor and didn’t touch his bike for six days because of an intestinal infection. That makes it tough for the Worlds.
"It is a day-to-day decision as to whether he rides Paris-Bourges and Paris-Tours. If not, then you can pretty much forget it." he continued.
Cavendish's last completed race was the GP Citta di Peccioli-Coppa Sabatini, on September 22. Before that he rode a strong Giro della Toscana, finishing sixth overall.
Cavendish can rarely be counted out, but the primary aim at Paris-Tours will mostly likely be to get miles in his legs before heading to the Middle East and linking up with the Great Britain road team.
Cavendish won the Worlds in 2011, in Copenhagen and reaffirmed his desire to win a second rainbow jersey on the road in an exclusive interview with Cyclingnews at the Tour of Britain.