Mark Cavendish takes the lead in the team time trial at Coppi e Bartali in Italy

Mark Cavendish wears the leader’s jersey for the first time in four YEARS after taking the lead in the Coppi e Bartali team time trial in Italy

  • Cavendish narrowly missed victory in the first of today’s two stages
  • But the 35-year-old took the lead after Tuesday’s team time trial
  • This is the first time since the Abu Dhabi Tour 2017 that Cavendish has led a stage race

Mark Cavendish wears the leader’s jersey for the first time in four years after opening day of the Settimana Coppi e Bartali in Italy.

The 35-year-old narrowly missed out on victory in the first of the day’s two stages, but regained the lead from Jakub Mareczko from Vini Zabu after his shorthanded team Deceuninck-QuickStep finished third against -the team watch on Tuesday afternoon.

This is the first time since the Abu Dhabi Tour 2017 that Cavendish has led a stage race, while his second place in the stage came behind his second place in the GP Monsere two weeks ago, his best place since June 2018.

Mark Cavendish continued his improved form by taking the lead in the Coppi e Bartali

Mark Cavendish continued his improved form by taking the lead in the Coppi e Bartali

“To be in the lead for the first time in four years is super nice,” said Cavendish.

“With Deceuninck-QuickStep, we only have five guys here, so we were a bit back to the wall, but everyone looked after me so well this morning and I’m sorry I couldn’t pay them back with a victory.

“In the team time trial we gave everything and it will be nice to wear the leader’s jersey for a day, and I look forward to supporting Mauri (Vansevenant) and Mikkel (Honoré) once we are in the climbs.

The 35-year-old took the lead after his team finished third in Tuesday's time trial

The 35-year-old took the lead after his team finished third in Tuesday’s time trial

Meanwhile, the Ineos Grenadiers dominated the time trial of the second stage of the Volta a Catalunya.

Australian Rohan Dennis took the win for the team while Geraint Thomas and Adam Yates entered the top 10 overall with strong performances on the hilly 18.5km course.

However, Chris Froome lost more time as he finished 79th, more than two minutes from Dennis’ time.

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