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Cavendish confirmed for Tour de France

26 Juin 2017

Cavendish only returned to racing this month after suffering from glandular fever, while Cummings underwent an operation two months ago after sustaining multiple fractures at the Tour of the Basque Country, making his twin successes at the nationals even more remarkable.

Cavendish would be joined in the Dimension Data team by countryman Steve Cummings, the British road race and time trial champion, who won stages at the 2015 and 2016 editions of the Tour de France. Cavendish's usual leadout man Mark Renshaw and mountain chaperone Bernhard Eisel are also in the team.

Lizzie Deignan overhauled the longtime leader, Elinor Barker, in the final stages on the Isle of Man to secure her fourth National Road Race title.

"As has been widely reported, it's been a hard few months for me on the back of the illness that set me back earlier on in the season", said the 30-time Tour stage victor.

"If I am being totally honest, had this not been the Tour de France we may have collectively taken a different approach with regards to my inclusion but I feel that I owe it to myself, the team, our sponsors and most importantly to the Tour itself given its history and everything that it stands for - as well as the emotional attachment I have for it - to give it my best and to put everything I have in to trying to help the team".

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Barker led by a minute at one stage before being reeled in, with Katie Archibald (Team WNT) and defending champion Hannah Barnes (Canyon-SRAM) finishing second and third respectively.

But it appears that Cavendish has done enough to prove fitness for the Tour, where the sprinters will get opportunities on nine potential stages of the race.

Cavendish, 32, has just one victory in 2017.

Cavendish's main rivals in the sprints will be German duo Andre Greipel and Marcel Kittel, French trio Nacer Bouhanni, Bryan Coquard and Arnaud Demare, with Slovakian superstar Peter Sagan desperate to add stage wins to the green jerseys he has been piling up for his all-round consistency.

Cavendish confirmed for Tour de France