British sprinting star Cavendish has returned to the Belgian WorldTour squad for the 2021 season, saying he has the feeling of being part of a team.
The 35-year-old previously raced for the outfit run by Patrick Lefevere in 2013-15, winning 44 races for the team.
Cavendish is now back in Deceuninck colours and said the team’s ethos hasn’t changed.
Speaking ahead of his second race of 2021, Le Samyn on Tuesday (March 2), Cavendish said: “There are only five riders actually the same as there was last time I was here but fundamentally it is the same team.
“They’re not trying to reinvent the wheel, just go out and race, keep it pretty simple, and enjoy the race. Don’t look at the power output, just trying to collectively work together to get across the finish line first and have fun.”
He added: “There’s an incredible team ethos there. It’s special, I felt that the last time I was here and that hasn’t wavered. you can see my relationship with Patrick, to be led like we are, that’s a massive factor in why the team has performed for the last 20 odd years.”
Cavendish made his 2021 debut for Deceuninck last month in the Clásica de Almería, but missed out in the final due to a mechanical.
He will line up with the same squad in Belgium this week, as he races Le Samyn for the first time since 2007, along with former winner Florian Sénéchal.
On what he learned from his season debut in Spain , Cavendish said: “You don’t really get too much from one race back to be fair
“What I know is I felt part of this team.”
Cavendish previously said he felt like a pure racer again in Almería and has shared more thoughts on what it takes to sustain your career.
He said: “Enjoying racing is quite important for anybody who wants a long career in sport. There’s still the same races there always was. Maybe the racing style has changed a lot, but fundamentally the stakes are still the same. We go out to try and win bike races and to provide publicity for our sponsors. I love riding my bike and actually there’s no better place to do it than here at Deceuninck – Quick-Step.”