Having ridden most of the 2018 season in a pair of fluorescent orange cycling shoes, Mark Cavendish certainly isn’t scared of a flash pair of shoes over the clean white option preferred by most professionals.
However the Dimension Data rider has taken things a step further with the shoes he’ll be wearing at the Tour de France, which are inspired by the original Nike Mercurial R9 football boots worn by Brazilian footballer Ronaldo at the 1998 World Cup.
Cavendish posted four photos of his new shoes on Instagram, showing the lace-up shoes with a Velcro strap across the top, the famous silver, blue and yellow design, and the Dynamic Fit Collar which is found on many of Nike’s football boots and is basically an extension of the shoes tongue that extends up the ankle.
Watch: Tour de France 2018 preview
Cavendish will head to the Tour in search of the record for the number of stage wins taken by a single rider. Eddy Merckx is the current record holder with 34 stage wins, with Cavendish currently sitting on 30.
The good news for Cavendish is that Nike Mercurials have a pretty good hit rate in France in years ending in the number eight.
Ronaldo notched up four goals and three assists in the 1998 World Cup, although he was unable to score in the final itself so maybe don’t put a bet on Cavendish to win on the final stage in Paris just yet.
All that’s left now is for Cavendish to be left off the Dimension Data teamsheet for the first stage of the Tour, before being reinstated at the very last moment.