Mark Cavendish out until mid-April as recovery from illness continues

British rider has struggled with his health for several weeks but is set to race the Presidential Cycling Tour of Türkiye later in April

Clock08:24, Tuesday 2nd April 2024
Mark Cavendish last raced at Milano-Torino, but pulled out of the race before the finish

© Getty Images

Mark Cavendish last raced at Milano-Torino, but pulled out of the race before the finish

Mark Cavendish’s (Astana Qazaqstan) race programme has been updated with the British rider confirmed to skip Wednesday's Scheldeprijs in Belgium and instead focus on his recovery from an illness that has wrecked much of his spring campaign.

The veteran sprinter has endured a torrid few weeks. He failed to pick up a result at the UAE Tour in February and missed the last stage due to a fever. He returned to race Tirreno-Adriatico in March but struggled once more before missing the time cut on a brutally tough stage 5.

A week later he raced Milano-Torino but complained of cold-like symptoms at the start before going on to DNF once more. He has not raced at a professional level since then but reportedly took part in a local amateur race on the Isle of Man where he rode to a top-30 finish.

His new return on April 21 at the Presidential Cycling Tour of Türkiye has been provisionally announced by his team.

“After being sick for several weeks following the Tirreno-Adriatico and Milano-Torino, Mark Cavendish has resumed his training, continuing his preparation for his biggest goals of the season. The team has adapted the racing plan, and as a result, Mark will miss the classic race Scheldeprijs and will instead spend some time at a training camp. After that, he plans to compete in the Presidential Cycling Tour of Türkiye and then the Tour de Hongrie,” Vasilis Anastopoulos, the Head of Performance of Astana Qazaqstan Team, said in a statement released by the team.

Read more: Anastopoulos: Mark Cavendish's lead-out riders speak with their eyes, they don't need to say much

Cavendish has centred his entire season around the Tour de France in July, where he will aim to become the outright record leader in stage wins. He is currently tied with Eddy Merckx on 34.

Cavendish, 38, came close to winning his 35th stage win last year but narrowly missed out before crashing out of the race. He made a U-turn on his retirement plans in order to give the record one more shot in 2024.

He started the season brightly with a stage win at the Tour Colombia, and while his next block of racing remains important in terms of confidence and form building, the reality is that all of the early season results matter very little when set against the importance of his Tour de France ambitions.

For the latest news, interviews and analysis from the world of professional cycling, be sure to check out the Racing tab on the GCN website and visit our essential guide to The Spring Classics to stay up to date with all of the action from cycling's most exciting season.

Related Content

Link to Mark Cavendish leaves UAE Tour through illness
Mark Cavendish will not race the final weekend of the UAE Tour

Mark Cavendish leaves UAE Tour through illness

British rider did not start the sixth stage after feeling ‘small fever’

Clock
Link to Mark Cavendish: I never lose motivation, I love this sport
Mark Cavendish speaks to the press on the eve of the 2024 UAE Tour

Mark Cavendish: I never lose motivation, I love this sport

Astana Qazaqstan sprinter continues 18th professional season with fifth start at the UAE Tour, and speaks of his delight being in his 'second home'

Clock
Link to Mørkøv and Renshaw on Mark Cavendish: 'It's a winning formula for us'
As will be the case throughout 2024, Michael Mørkøv has barely left the side of Mark Cavendish

Mørkøv and Renshaw on Mark Cavendish: 'It's a winning formula for us'

As the British sprinter begins his 18th European season, we talk to Michael Mørkøv and Mark Renshaw on the power trio at the heart of Astana Qazaqstan

Clock
Link to 'No photo finish needed today' – Tom Pidcock rights wrongs at Amstel Gold Race
Tom Pidcock finally took to the top step of the podium in this year's Amstel Gold Race

'No photo finish needed today' – Tom Pidcock rights wrongs at Amstel Gold Race

Brit extra happy to win after Wout van Aert photo finish controversy in 2021

Clock
Subscribe to the GCN Newsletter

Get the latest, most entertaining and best informed news, reviews, challenges, insights, analysis, competitions and offers - straight to your inbox