Mark Cavendish says Marianne Vos ‘has been an inspiration on so many levels’

Vos just claimed her 30th stage win in the Giro Donne, one of the biggest stage races on the calendar

Marianne Vos at the Giro Donne 2021
(Image credit: Luc Claessen/Getty Images)

Mark Cavendish has said Marianne Vos “has been an inspiration on so many levels,” after she reached a historic milestone in the Giro Donne.

Dutch pro Vos has been dominant in cycling for 15 years and continues to set records, including taking her 30th stage victory in the Giro Donne. 

The Giro Donne, along with the Women’s Tour in Britain, is one of the most prestigious stage races on the calendar, with Vos winning stages in 10 different editions, starting with her debut back in 2007.

After Vos’s win on stage seven of the 2021 Giro Donne, her second of this year's race, Cavendish paid tribute to the 34-year-old.

Cavendish, winner of 33 stages of the Tour de France, said: “Until we finally have the privilege of the Tour de France Femmes next year, the Giro Donne is the greatest stage race for our female colleagues and Marianne Vos has just won her 30th stage of the race.

“This needs to be big news. 30 is such a milestone.”

Cavendish added: “She’s been my inspiration on so many levels, for so many years. The absolute GOAT.”

Vos has an absolutely remarkable palmarès, racking up a staggering 235 wins since the start of her career in 2006.

With three road World Championships, seven World Cyclocross Championships, five Flèche Wallone titles, Olympic gold, three overall wins at the Giro Donne (formerly the Giro Rosa) and now her 30th individual stage, Vos one of the most decorated cyclists in history. 

But what’s also remarkable about Vos’s career is her longevity and ability to overcome setbacks.

>>> When and where Mark Cavendish can break Tour de France stage record in the coming week 

In 2015, she raced just twice as she suffered from back problems, only to come back in 2016 to reach the top step of the podium again.

This season she has a collection of wins in the most prestigious races, including taking the Ghent-Wevelgem title, winning Amstel Gold Race, and winning two stages of the Giro Donne so far.   

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Alex Ballinger

Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.