Cavendish will be riding alongside the ‘Wolfpack’s’ main men in the sprint train for Bennett with a team that could win the race with any one of their riders, as the race gets underway on Wednesday (April 7).
Bennett has started the season with five wins as well as an amazing performance at Ghent-Wevelgem, before he was dropped due after going deep on the cobbled climbs.
Cavendish has won Scheldeprijs three times in his career with the last being in 2011, but he will likely not get one closer to Marcel Kittel who won this race a record five times during his time racing.
The ‘Manx Missile’ will be hoping to guide Bennett to victory, but the best result the former Irish champion has had at the race is fifth back in 2014, only managing eighth in last year’s edition.
He should have a lot of confidence though as he has taken his first one-day Classic in Belgium this year at the Oxyclean Brugge-De Panne Classic earlier in the season.
The usual suspects for Bennett’s lead-out are in the team with his trusty last man of Michael Mørkøv along with Shane Archbald, Iljo Keisse, Florian Sénéchal and Bert Van Lerberghe.
British rider Cavendish has not quite managed to get a win in his return season with the team taking a couple of second places in sprints at smaller races.
Scheldeprijs is the last of the cobble-focused Classics with the race starting in the town of Terneuzen before taking on an almost pan-flat route, finishing 194.2km later in Schoten on the banks of the river Scheldt.
Defending champion Caleb Ewan (Lotto-Soudal) is not going to be taking to the start as the team instead focuses on German sprinter, John Degenkolb.
But while Bennett won’t be coming up against his main rival Ewan, it doesn’t mean he will have it all his own way as some of the world’s fastest sprinters are down to ride.
Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe), Elia Viviani (Cofidis), Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ), Cees Bol (DSM), Giacomo Nizzolo (Qhubeka-Assos), Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) and on-form Belgian Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix) are just a few names that are likely to be up there.
Scheldeprijs could have been one of the last races of Cavendish’s career in 2020, as his contract with Bahrain-McLaren came to an end with no sign of a new contract in sight, before managed to get himself a new deal with Deceuninck – Quick-Step for at least this year.