Tour de France: Mark Cavendish blames team for stage two loss
Manxman also in dispute with Etixx - Quick-Step manager
Last Updated: 06/07/15 7:49am
Mark Cavendish blamed an Etixx - Quick-Step team-mate and then entered into a dispute with his manager after failing to win stage two of the Tour de France.
Cavendish looked on course to claim a 26th career Tour stage win in Zelande but finished fourth behind winner Andre Greipel, runner-up Peter Sagan and third-placed Fabian Cancellara.
The 30-year-old felt his chief lead-out rider, Mark Renshaw, peeled off too early and left him with no choice but to launch his sprint with around 300m remaining, far further than the 200m he prefers.
Cavendish said: "I think Mark went too early and kind of left me hanging. We died. The day Cancellara beats me in a sprint, I have gone too long. I have gassed it. It's disappointing.
"I have just watched it back on the video and the guys behind played it perfect. I reckon I could get a job as a lead-out man for them."
In an added blow, Cancellara's third place and four accompanying bonus seconds saw the Swiss rider take the race leader's yellow jersey instead of Cavendish's team-mate Tony Martin.
Etixx - Quick-Step manager Patrick Lefevere criticised Cavendish for not trying harder to clinch third place and deny Cancellara the bonuses.
He said: "Cavendish stopped sprinting and this costs Tony the jersey. I am not happy at all. Probably this was our last chance to take the yellow jersey.
"Cavendish? I think he should be disappointed. We were the most hard-working team but we finish empty-handed."
Cavendish took a different view when questioned by the media, although he may not have been aware of Lefevere's comments.
He wrote on Twitter: "If I could hang on for 3rd, I could hang on for the win. Some imbeciles think cycling is a computer game."
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