Mark Cavendish confirmed to race Tour de Yorkshire 2019

The Manxman will take the start line after recently returning to racing following illness

Mark Cavendish at the 2018 Tour de Yorkshire (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Mark Cavendish has been confirmed to take the start line at the 2019 Tour de Yorkshire.

The 33-year-old returned to racing in the Tour of Turkey, where he took on more of a domestique role, as he continued to work towards full fitness after abandoning Paris-Nice in March.

The Manxman is still on the road to regaining the form which saw him win 30 Tour de France stages, four fewer than record holder Eddy Merckx, after being diagnosed with the Epstein-Barr virus in 2017, that forced him to stop racing and training after the 2018 Tour de France.

>>> Mark Cavendish confirmed to race Tour de Yorkshire

Cavendish's mother lives in Harrogate, and he said of his return to Yorkshire: "I’m really excited to heading back to the Tour de Yorkshire along with my Dimension Data for Qhubeka team-mates to race in one of the most beautiful places in the world.

"I really enjoyed the tough but beautiful parcours last year as I rode the race for the first time, and I look forward to seeing what’s in store for us in the 2019 edition.

"Over and above the racing though, it always blows my mind to see the incredible support of the fans. With some of my family in Yorkshire, it makes it so special and I can’t wait to see them all again."

The former road race world champion has not had an ideal start to the season, having missed Milan-San Remo and Scheldeprijs which he had planned to race in.

Cavendish, who regularly updates fans via his social media accounts, tweeted for the first time in nearly two months yesterday, posting a cryptic message that read: "Guess it’s time to get back on social media! Sorry it’s been a while everyone. Just needed to remember who I am. Thanks for staying with me. Love ya all x".

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The Tour de Yorkshire 2019 is bursting with British talent, as four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome (Team Sky), British national road race champion Connor Swift (Madison Genesis) and former road race world champion Lizzie Deignan (Trek-Segafredo) are set to take the start.

Marcel Kittel, another talented sprinter who has seen his form wane lately, will also be racing, as he looks to get his season back on track.

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Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races.

Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab and I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).

I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.