British sprint great Mark Cavendish will ride in the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race in Australia next month, organisers said Monday.
The 30-year-old, an Olympian, former world champion and winner of 26 Tour de France stages, will race for the first time with his new squad Team Dimension Data, who have just been awarded a UCI WorldTour Licence.
Cavendish has chosen the Evans race, around Victoria state, as his only event in Australia this southern summer, meaning he will not be a starter in the Tour Down Under near Adelaide in the same month.
He will line up with two stars of Australian racing, Rohan Dennis riding for BMC Racing, and Simon Gerrans with ORICA-GreenEDGE.
“I am looking forward to starting the 2016 season in Victoria and racing for the first time with Team Dimension Data at the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race,” Cavendish said in a statement.
“I’ve heard great things about the challenging Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race course and I’m especially excited to visit Geelong again — last time I was there was for the 2010 UCI Road World Championships.”
The Evans event will feature nine UCI WorldTour teams (BMC Racing, ORICA-GreenEDGE, Team Sky, Team Katusha, Lotto-Soudal, Trek Factory Racing, Team LottoNL-Jumbo, IAM Cycling and Team Dimension Data), four UCI Pro Continental teams (UnitedHealthcare, ONE Pro Cycling, Drapac Professional Cycling, Team Novo Nordisk) and the Australian National Team.
It is named in honour of Cadel Evans, the first Australian to win the Tour de France in 2011. – Agence France-Presse