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Opportunities help Henderson win in 2010

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Greg Henderson (Team Sky) won a stage of Paris-Nice this year.

Greg Henderson (Team Sky) won a stage of Paris-Nice this year. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Gregory Henderson (Team Sky) on the podium after an Eneco Tour stage win

Gregory Henderson (Team Sky) on the podium after an Eneco Tour stage win (Image credit:

Today's elite men's road race at the UCI Road World Championships will be the last event of the season for Greg Henderson after the New Zealander withdrew from his nation's Commonwealth Games squad.

Henderson explained the reasons for his withdrawal to Cyclingnews and said a move from HTC-Columbia to Team Sky at the end of last year has paid dividends during a season that saw him take six victories.

"Katie [Mactier, Henderson's wife] and I sat down a few weeks ago after the Tour of Britain as we were flying home and weighed up the pros and cons," said Henderson.

"The cons for me, at this stage, outweighed the pros. I then decided to call it a season at the end of this race.

"We're going to have a week here in Melbourne - this is my home away from home - then we'll head to Bali for a week to relax and have a holiday," he added.

The 34-year-old from Dunedin started the season with a win in the Down Under Classic in Australia before taking a stage victories in Paris-Nice, Ster Elektrotoer, the Tour of Benelux and Tour of Britain, where he took the points classification. He also rode the Giro d'Italia and had five top-five stage placings despite some bad luck on occasions.

It all adds up to one of his best seasons, and Henderson admitted as much, although the only blip on his radar was missing the year's biggest race, the Tour de France.

"The only thing I was disapointed in was missing the Tour selection. They backed everything on Wiggins, which didn't pan out so well... other than that I was happy with my season," said Henderson.

"I won six times this year and for me that's a good season. I was happy with the team - to get the team up and running first year, we did a tremendous job."

Whilst predominantly being a domestique at HTC-Columbia, Henderson's move to Team Sky was prompted by the chance to be a protected rider in sprints more often. He says that the British squad's trust in his ability was integral to his solid set of results throughout 2010.

"For me it was [a case of getting] my own opportunities - that was pretty much the overriding factor [in the move]," said Henderson. "There was no problem with the team [HTC-Columbia] and it wasn't like I left on the bad terms, it was just a personal thing for some opportunities."