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“This year, for me, the race goes how it goes. I might win it, and that is why I'm riding. I might get dropped, and I might not. If it comes to a sprint, I'm the best opportunity we [Omega Pharma - Quick-Step] have if it comes...

Photo: Sirotti






22.03.2014 @ 11:08 Posted by Joseph Doherty

2009 Milan-Sanremo winner Mark Cavendish insisted yesterday that the year’s first monument remains “wide open” despite the changes to its route.


"There are so many variables at Milano-San Remo, and that is what makes it beautiful. It is not an easy race just because it ends in a sprint.


“There are 200 guys on the start line that can possibly win. It's not like that at any other race. It is a long race, the easiest to finish, but the hardest to win.”


Cavendish was originally planning on skipping the race but due to the removal of both the Pompeiana and La Manie climbs, he will now do La Primavera. When he won in 2009, he actually won on a hillier course than this year’s, although he only just be Heinrich Haussler by millimeters in a photo finish. 


Cavendish must get over the Cipressa and the Poggio climbs, with the latter topping out just 6km from the finish line.


“This year, for me, the race goes how it goes. I might win it, and that is why I'm riding. I might get dropped, and I might not. If it comes to a sprint, I'm the best opportunity we [Omega Pharma – Quick-Step] have if it comes to that."


“If I don't race this year, I might regret it. I had a win in 2009 and a top 10 last year - there is always that possibility.”


Crucially, Cavendish has a strong team built solely around him. He has Matteo Trentin, Mark Renshaw and Alessandro Pettachi to help him in the sprint and Michal Kwiatkowski can do a good lead out but will be used to cover attacks on the Cipressa and the Poggio, where he will sit at the back and not ride due to having Cavendish in the bunch but will be fresh enough should the break stay away to at least podium if not win. Either way, this will be Cavendish’s best ever shot at winning Milan-Sanremo.




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