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"On paper some of the stages are favourable to sprinters. We have an excellent team here and when we get the chance we will try to make it our race," Cavendish says

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ALESSANDRO PETACCHI

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DECEUNINCK - QUICK-STEP

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GERT STEEGMANS

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GIANNI MEERSMAN

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ILJO KEISSE

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KEVIN DE WEERT

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MARK CAVENDISH

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MARK RENSHAW

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TOUR OF TURKEY

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24.04.2014 @ 22:56 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Having missed most of the classics season due to illness, Mark Cavendish will finally make his return to competition when he lines up in the Tour of Turkey. The Brit hopes to win a stage in the 8-day race and will be backed by a formidable lead-out train that is led by Mark Renshaw, Alessandro Petacchi and Gert Steegmans.

 

Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team has announced the selection for Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey. The 1174 kilometer race, from April 27th to May 4th, will have several stages for the sprints, but also some chances for the climbers.

 

The third stage will be the first chance for the GC riders to make their mark. The stage, from Finike to Elmali, finishes on Category 1 Gogubeli Pass. However, there is also a Category 1 climb, Kuruovabeli, at kilometer 104.8 of 185. Riders will have to get over that to be able to contend the finish on that challenging ascent.

 

The fifth stage features some difficult climbing sections, though it may still end in a sprint finish in Turgutreis. Then there is Stage 6, which features a summit finish in Selcuk.

 

The final two stages should be chances for the sprinters, giving the stage race a good mix of race scenarios for riders with different skills. 

“The squad for the Tour of Turkey is built around Mark Cavendish," explains sports director Rik Van Slycke. "Mark has trained well in the last two weeks and he’s ready to return. The Tour of Turkey is a great race to get back in to a racing rhythm. There will also be some arrivals suited for Mark and the team, which will be finales where we’ll try to do well.”

“For me this is the first time at the Tour of Turkey,” Cavendish said. “I’m curious to find out about this race and at the same time to understand where I am in terms of physical condition after a good training period. On paper some of the stages are favourable to sprinters. We have an excellent team here and when we get the chance we will try to make it our race.”

The brief Turkish stage race will also mark a return to racing for Gianni Meersman after the injury sustained in the Paris-Nice, which kept him away from the races for a few weeks. 

“I can’t wait to put on a number and get back in the race,” explains Gianni Meersman. “It won’t be easy in the beginning since I won’t have my racing rhythm, but I’m sure that the will and enthusiasm to get back to racing will help me a lot.”

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