Cavendish withdrawn from Romandie by team

Mark Cavendish wins Tour of Romandie 2010 stage 2

Mark Cavendish was withdrawn by his HTC-Columbia team from the Tour de Romandie in Switzerland on Friday as a result of the two-fingered salute used by the Manxman when he won stage two.

Cavendish stuck two fingers in the air as he crossed the line after winning Thursday's stage, later saying that the gesture was aimed at "journalists and commentators who know jack-**** about cycling". It was the British sprinter's second win of the year after struggling with a severe tooth infection in the early season.

On Friday morning, Cavendish issued an apology for his actions via an HTC-Columbia statement, but the squad has now taken the matter one step further by withdrawing him from the event.

"I did want to make a statement to my critics but I realise that making a rude gesture on the finish line is not the best way to do that," Cavendish said.

"I apologise to everybody watching the race and especially the kids. I am not proud of releasing the feelings in that way."

Cavendish has been fined 6,000 Swiss francs by the Romandie race jury for the gesture and the team will donate his stage winnings to a children's charity, Right To Play.

The Briton will now concentrate on stage wins at the Tour of California in America (May 16-23).

HTC-Columbia's Michael Rogers took the Tour de Romandie race lead after Friday's time trial stage. Two stages remain in the race, which concludes on Sunday.

Related links

Cavendish apologises for two-finger salute

Cavendish back to winning ways in Romandie

Stapleton cools Cavendish-Greipel fire

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Nigel Wynn
Nigel Wynn

Nigel Wynn worked as associate editor on CyclingWeekly.com, he worked almost single-handedly on the Cycling Weekly website in its early days. His passion for cycling, his writing and his creativity, as well as his hard work and dedication, were the original driving force behind the website’s success. Without him, CyclingWeekly.com would certainly not exist on the size and scale that it enjoys today. Nigel sadly passed away, following a brave battle with a cancer-related illness, in 2018. He was a highly valued colleague, and more importantly, n exceptional person to work with - his presence is sorely missed.