The 36-year-old picked up his 68th success at World Tour level.
Mark Cavendish netted Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl’s 10th victory of the year after an enthralling sprint in Abu Dhabi, where stage 2 of the season’s first World Tour race concluded. Just like one day ago, the finale was an intense one, with a headwind complicating matters, but this couldn’t stop the Manxman, who emerged from the scrum and produced a massive acceleration in the final 250 meters.
Except for some crosswinds that spiced up things with 120 kilometers to go, the stage was a quiet one until the closing kilometers, when the sprinters’ teams began making their presence felt. The Wolfpack left it late, making an appearance with only three kilometers remaining and piloting Mark Cavendish towards the front of the peloton, in anticipation of what looked to be another nervous mass gallop.
Michael Mørkøv used his vast experience to guide the 2021 Tour de France points jersey winner, who launched the sprint down the left-hand side of the road and produced a rapid acceleration that saw him hold off the other fast men for his 158th victory in the pro ranks.
“Being in Abu Dhabi always feels special and winning a stage here it’s even more so. I knew I was capable of getting more wins, and this victory, my first World Tour one of the season, gives me a lot of confidence not just for the remaining stages of the UAE Tour, but also for the next races.”
“I want to thank the team for their work today. We have a young squad here, with two neo-pros, but we all believe in each other, and all the guys did a great job in bringing me to the finish as fresh as possible. It was again very hectic, but we remained calm, and as I felt good allowed me to launch my sprint from 250 meters to go, despite the headwind. I had the energy to maintain my sprint all the way to the line and I’m happy with the way things went for us today”, said Mark Cavendish after his 20th victory in the Middle East.
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