Cavendish returns favour for Wiggins' World Championship work
World Road Race Champion Mark Cavendish insists his role as a cog in the Team Sky machine has been 'a pleasure' and that he's returned a favour by supporting Bradley Wiggins at this year's Tour de France.
On average Cavendish won five stages for each of the past four Tours de France before he signed for Team Sky this season.
This year Cavendish won Stage 2, but since then has worked for the team, dropping back to the car for water and food for team-mates and pace-making at the front of the peloton.
Stage 15 to Pau had looked like a chance for Cavendish's second stage win - but Team Sky eventually decided not to chase down the breakaway - preferring to save their energy for the days ahead in the Pyrenees.
Cavendish says that teamwork is a part of cycling - and has not forgotten the role Wiggins played in his World Championship Road Race victory in Copenhagen in 2011.
"It's been different," the Manxman told Ned Boulting. "I've enjoyed it, I've enjoyed the job ... it's great being part of a team that's wearing the yellow jersey.
"I've missed not being able to sprint, that's no lie, but to do the other job has not been anything less than a pleasure.
"It's irrelevant, the [World Road Race Champion's] jersey, this jersey was won by an incredible team last year that included Brad.
"The roles are reversed here, I'm just part of that little line as well as Chris Froome and the others who were there at the World Championships.
"I'm wearing this jersey on behalf of a few guys that are here and aren't here. If I can return the favour that's part and parcel of cycling, isn't it?"
Bradley Wiggins said after Stage 15 that Cavendish's work for the team had been 'fantastic' and that he behaved like 'an absolute gentleman'.
Wiggins added that Team Sky would 'lay it down' for Cavendish in trying to lead him out for a fourth straight stage victory on the Champs-Elysees in Paris on Sunday.
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