Mark Cavendish’s loyal HTC-Highroad team-mate Mark Renshaw will join Rabobank for 2012, the Dutch team confirmed this afternoon.

Despite rumours linking him to the new Australian GreenEDGE team, Renshaw has signed a two-year contract with Erik Breukink’s team.

Stories in the Dutch media suggest that Rabobank faced opposition from Team Sky for Renshaw’s signature, but their offer of making him team leader was the key factor in his decision.

However, Cycling Weekly understands that the complications with signing a key member of the Australian set up could have caused problems for Sky in an Olympic year.

Speaking about his impending move, Renshaw said: “For many years I have helped others to win races, now I’m going to try to win some of the biggest competitions myself.

“The Rabobank Cycling Team is one of the most professional teams with a solid structure, so I can pursue my goals.”

Mark Cavendish and Mark Renshaw, Tour of Qatar 2011, stage four

Loyal servant: Cavendish has always praised the efforts of his team-mates

Renshaw has played a key role in the majority of Cavendish’s 20 Tour de France stage victories, most notably the incredible lead-out on the Champs-Elysees at the end of the 2009 Tour.

He was also thrown out of last year’s race for headbutting Garmin’s Julian Dean on the stage into Bourg-lès-Valence, which Cavendish duly won.

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  • mike short

    Harry is probably not as quick as Cav – then again, who is? Whether he has the ability to win big bunch sprints remains to be seen and would never have been known if he had stayed in his current role. They are all professionals seeking to get the best out of their profession. I just hope this is not an example of the Peter Principle.

    Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

  • Juliet H

    Good move Renshaw! Cav will be ok, we already know he can win under his own steam when required, and besides, he has Bernie doesn’t he? Respect and gratitude to Renshaw for the work he did for Cav. What a champ, and good luck to him.

  • Ken Evans

    Cav didn’t offer him enough money !

  • Steve R

    Can’t blame him for that, great career move but won’t pose a huge threat if Cav gets another bull of a lead out man! Thank’s for some fantastic leads.

  • Tony

    Good luck to him, he’s certainly served his ‘apprenticeship’. He knows what Cav is capable of so it will be interesting to see them go head to head. Talking of head to head, maybe Bernie will now be the one doing the butting for Cav in future, perhaps Renshaw had better watch out! Ha ha.