Mark Cavendish takes third at Scheldeprijs, in best result for Astana Qazaqstan

Jasper Philipsen of Alpecin-Deceuninck took the win, with DSM’s Sam Welsford grabbing second

Mark Cavendish in action at Scheldeprijs
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Mark Cavendish narrowly missed out on a first-ever victory in the colours of Astana-Qazaqstan on Wednesday, finishing third at Scheldeprijs behind a flying Jasper Philipsen of Alpecin-Deceuninck.

In a chaotic dash for the line, Cavendish was forced to wheel-hop his way to the front, taking advantage of other teams sprint trains after losing teammates in the run-in.

It was his joint-best result for Astana, after he took third on the opening stage of the UAE Tour back in February.

Of the eight times Cavendish has started Sheldeprijs, he's finished on the podium on seven occasions.

After cleverly making use of Trek-Segafredo’s train on Wednesday, Cavendish emerged from the wheel of Edward Theuns and lit the afterburners in a trademark high-speed dash for the line.

However, eventual winner Jasper Philipsen timed his jump to perfection, storming past a rampaging Cavendish to grab his second Scheldeprijs title in Schoten, the Netherlands.

Following on in Philipsen’s slipstream was DSM’s Sam Welsford who took second ahead of Cavendish in third.

Despite missing out on a long overdue win, the current British national champion still beat the likes of Groenewegen and Lotto DSTNY's Caleb Ewan to the podium spots. A timely morale booster ahead of Cavendish's return to the Tour de France later this summer where he will go for a record 35th stage win.

Cavendish is currently level with all-time great Eddy Merckx on 34 wins.

After this afternoon’s race, Cavendish will next make an appearance in competitive action at the Giro di Sicilia. From there, it’s widely expected that he will race the Giro d’Italia in order to build form for the Tour in July.

Meanwhile European champion Fabio Jakobsen was a no-show in the finale of Scheldeprijs, and Soudal Quick-Step later confirmed that the Dutchman had suffered a mechanical issue in the run-in.

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Tom joined Cycling Weekly in early 2022 and his news stories, rider interviews and features appear both online and in the magazine. 

He has reported from some of professional cycling's biggest races and events including the Tour de France and the recent Glasgow World Championships. He has also covered races elsewhere across the world and interviewed some of the sport's top riders. 

When not writing news scoops from the WorldTour, or covering stories from elsewhere in the domestic professional scene, he reports on goings on at bike shops up and down the UK, where he is based when not out on the road at races. He has also appeared on the Radio Cycling podcast.