Cavendish struggles to find consolation in pink jersey

Mark Cavendish Giro stage 2 2009

Mark Cavendish is a winner. And when he doesn?t win, especially through fault of his own, not even wearing the maglia rosa in the Giro d?Italia can make up for losing.

Cavendish let out a long scream of anger we can?t print after he crossed the finish line in Trieste having been beaten by Alessandro Petacchi (LPR Brakes). The happiness and emotions he had enjoyed during the stage while wearing the maglia rosa were replaced by a burning anger and sense he had let down his hardworking team mates.

?I was delivered perfectly by my team. Normally I jump earlier. I was lazy and if Petacchi gets a jump, he?s so strong, you?re not going to comeback. He did a perfect sprint and he was better than me. The team was perfect and everything was perfect, except for me at the finish.?

?I normally jump at 250 metres or 200 metres. I didn?t sense anyone in the sprint because usually if you do, you jump. If you leave it later, it makes it easier to win and I was trying to make it easier for myself. But if you get someone as good as Petacchi, who isn?t as lazy as me, and gets a jump, I don?t think there was any chance of me coming back.?

Asked if perhaps he had become over confident after all his success, Cavendish said: "Perhaps, yeah. It serves me right."

?With an ego like mine, to lose is damaging to my pride, but to lose to Alessandro isn?t such a bad thing. For sure, it?s a consolation having the pink jersey but that was going to happen anyway. The guys rode all day to keep the pink and to deliver me to the finish. That?s what hurts, I let them down.?

Cavendish was graceful in defeat but full of praise for fellow Brit Ben Swift who was an impressive third in the sprint.

?It?s a super result for him. He?s the next up and coming guy from Great Britain,? Cavendish said, with the Italian media quickly noting Swift's name for the future.

?I?ve known him since he was little and he?s been getting good results this year. He?s not got the support I had in my first year and without that support, he?s doing tremendously.?


Cavendish will surely want to make up for defeat on stage three on Monday. The 198km stage finishes in Valdobbiadene at the foot of the Dolomites and there are three short climbs in the final 60km. The finish is twisty but the run is flat and so perfect for revenge.

"I hope it?s a sprint again, we?ll do what we can to sprint again, so that we can make amends for today," Cavendish said.

Giro d'Italia 2009

Petacchi steals Cavendish's thunder at the end of stage two

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Giro d'Italia 2009 links

Stage reports

Stage two: Petacchi denies Cavendish the stage win

Stage one: Cavendish in pink as Columbia prove their point to Garmin

Photo galleries

Stage two photo gallery

Stage one photo gallery


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