Mark Cavendish, former world champion and green jersey winner, is leaving his current team Sky and moving to the Belgian team Omega Pharma – Quickstep under a three-year contract. The transfer, which had been rumoured for well over a month, was confirmed this morning by a statement on Team Sky’s website.
Cavendish began hinting he would leave the team only a year into his two-year contract late in the season after what was likely a disappointing Tour de France. This July, Cav’s support in the sprints was sorely lacking as Sky built a team built around Bradley Wiggins’ overall ambitions. Though he received two superb leadouts from Wiggins in the latter half of the race, including a marvellous effort on the Champs Élysées, Cavendish only netted three stage wins and never factored in the fight for the green jersey. With Sky’s avowed interest continuing the project of becoming a grand tour squad built around Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome, the decision to leave was only logical, a sentiment which even Bradley Wiggins echoed despite his fondness for the Manx sprinter. At Omega Pharma – Quickstep, Cavendish should find a team much more dedicated to securing victories in the sprints, especially in grand tours.