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Giro d’Italia 2013 – Stage 12: Longarone – Treviso 134km. Cavendish Reaches 100!

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Mark Cavendish, there’s little left to say, really.

He’s the best roadman sprinter in the world – and his partnership with Steegmans is developing into something special.

It’s not as if anyone is going to lean on Big Gert…

The Belgian is quick in his own right and has found the perfect niche as Cav’s final ‘booster,’ developing the power to take Cav clear of the peloton’s gravitational pull and launching him to the top of the podium.

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Mark Cavendish reached a career tally of 100 wins today. Photo©LaPresse

The other day I was saying that Bouhanni is quick, he is, but Cav is even quicker.

To achieve 100 wins in any avenue of the sport is something that only the best can think of – but to do so in the Pro Tour and at just 27 years-of-age is remarkable.

Conceivably, he has a good five years at this level before his star begins to wane.

I well remember my surprise when I heard he’d won the Scheldeprijs; the man had to be taken seriously.

He’d had wins in Germany and Poland; but the 2007 Scheldeprijs, in Flanders, beating Robbie McEwen – and a certain Mr. Steegmans, well, that was a different level.

I was fortunate enough to witness at first hand two of the three wins he cites as his best – the first was his first Tour stage, I missed that one.

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Cavendish squeezes past Haussler to take Milan-San Remo.

But was on hand, with Martin for the second, which was 2009 Milan-Sanremo where he snatched what looked like a sure victory from Heinrich Haussler right on the line.

His closing speed was remarkable – he was at a different level.

And the third was the Worlds in Copenhagen in 2011 – albeit the whole GB team should have a rainbow jersey for that one.

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Winning the Worlds with the full backing of a strong team GB, was a long time in the planning.

But even as Cav finally gets into full stride with the laminated floor team, the rumours are circulating.

Mark Renshaw has discovered that there’s a big difference between being the ‘best lead out man in the world’ and one of the best sprinters in the world; especially when there’s a Dutch fast man in your Dutch team.

Word is he’ll be back with Cav for ’14 – but there’s also word that the Manxman ‘isn’t fitting in at QuickStep’ and will be offsky.

But that was before his hat trick at the Giro…

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Mark gets a brake tweek after a wheel change. Photo©LaPresse

And let’s not forget what the Giro is really all about – selling things.

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Cavendish loves the Specialized brand. Photo©Tim de Waele

Specialized weren’t slow to get their pitch in;

“The Manxman’s legendary kick saw him cross the line in first place for his third win of the 2013 Giro d’Italia. No rider has had as much success aboard the Specialized Venge as Mark Cavendish.

“While winning sprints has become expected of the Manxman, garnering 100 career victories is no small feat and one that few racers lay claim to.

“Having won the Green Jersey, a World Championship and numerous Tour stages all aboard the bike it seemed only fitting to celebrate Cav’s 100th victory with his very own custom S-Works Venge.

“As arguably one of the sports best ever sprinters, Cavendish embodies the spirit and pure speed the Venge represents,” explains Brent Graves, Director of Road Bike Product Development.

“We wanted to create a Specialized edition bike that not only celebrated Cav’s 100 wins, but also highlighted the many accomplishments he’s already achieved,” added Graves.

“With some of Cav’