Report: Mark Cavendish set to announce retirement at end of season

Gazzetta dello Sport states the supersprinter will confirm in Giro d'Italia press conference Monday that this season will be his last.

Photo: Astana Qazaqstan

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Mark Cavendish is set to retire at the end of this season, according to reports out of Gazzetta dello Sport.

The Italian daily writes that Cavendish, who turned 38 years old on the day of the Giro d’Italia’s 15th stage Sunday, will confirm he’s racing his last pro season in a rest day conference at the corsa rosa on Monday.

Cavendish is currently riding through the Italian tour on the hunt for a stage win with Astana-Qazaqstan.

For Cavendish, this Giro serves as a grand tour form-finder ahead of his push at a record-topping 35th Tour de France sprint victory in the summer.

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The Manx megastar joined Astana this season and hasn’t added to his 161 career wins since.

He has however shown flashes of his world-topping form with third-place finishes at the UAE Tour, Scheldeprijs, and last week at the Giro.

Cavendish was saved from possible retirement this winter when Astana-Qazaqstan boss Alexander Vinokourov booked him in on a one-year deal with a team devoid of leadout riders.

Vinokourov shifted his roster to boost Cavendish’s chances with signings like Cees Bol, who is expected to team up with the 38-year-old in France this summer.

Despite being faced by the modern pack of sleek, versatile sprinters, Cavendish insists the love that so far carried him through 18 pro seasons and victories in the road worlds, Milan-San Remo, and all three grand tours is still there.

“For me, it is quite simple. I can continue riding my bike, I can continue winning, so why not do it? I love it,” Cavendish told The Sunday Times earlier in the year. “I love racing. It’s changed. The racing is not as enjoyable but I still love it.”

Will the 2023 season be Cavendish’s last?

Check back Monday to find out.

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