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Cavendish wins Stage One of 2015 Dubai Tour

Mark Cavendish of Great Britain and Etixx - Quick-Step celebrates winning stage one of the Dubai Tour from the Dubai International Marine Club to Union House Flag on February 4, 2015 in Dubai, UAE. (Getty)

By Staff

Mark Cavendish (Etixx – Quick-Step) won stage one of the 2015 Dubai Tour Wednesday afternoon, despite a late surge by Andrea Guardini (Astana Pro Team). Elia Viviani (Team Sky) finished third.
The stage took place in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

Victory brought Cavendish the race lead overall, earning him the Blue Jersey (sponsored by the Commercial Bank Of Dubai), and also the lead in the overall points classification, rewarded by the Red Jersey (sponsored by Emirates).

The pro peloton Westin Dubai stage which is a flat race over 145 km ending in a sprint was covered in a time of three hours 25 minutes at an average speed of 42,439 km/h by Cavendish.
Paolo Simion (Bardiani CSF), eighth in the stage, was the best finisher among the Best Young Rider (born on or after 1 Jan 1990) and took the White Jersey (sponsored by RTA).
The Intermediate Sprints competition, rewarded by the UAE Flag Jersey (sponsored by Dubai Sports Channel), is led by Ben Swift (Team Sky).

“We planned our lead-out to go in the last few kilometres, but it was so windy there we had to use everybody just to stay at the front in the last 20 km. It was only ourselves and Giant riding. Some teams have bought sprinters this winter and then they don’t ride for the sprinters in the first race of the year. But as always, my team showed confidence, they rode incredibly together. And just to follow Mark (Renshaw) is so nice, he’s so patient," said Cavendish after the race on how he sprinted to the finish.
“I’m super-happy with my form, and super-happy with the cohesion between Etixx – Quick-Step. At training camp it was such a good ambience. We knew we’d start off on a good note. We won 60 races last year, and we want to better on that this year. It’s not going to be a big ask, I don’t think, because you can feel the motivation, the desire to co out as a unit and win,” said Cavendish on his ambitions for the season.

The second stage is scheduled to begin at 10.55 am at Dubai International Marine Club-Mina Seyahi and finish at approximately 4.15pm at The Palm Jumeirah (Atlantis).