Mark Cavendish set to finalise move to MTN-Qhubeka on Tuesday
Exclusive: Manxman to join South African team this winter
By Orla Chennaoui
Last Updated: 29/09/15 9:06am
Mark Cavendish is on the verge of signing a contract with South African team MTN-Qhubeka, Sky Sports understands.
The 30-year-old Manxman is set to finalise a deal on Tuesday lunchtime.
Cavendish will take six people to MTN-Qhubeka with him, including riders Mark Renshaw and Bernhard Eisel, and his own personal carer.
MTN-Qhubeka will be known as Team Dimension Data next year after recruiting a new title sponsor to replace MTN and Samsung, who are both leaving.
They also announced Deloitte as a new sub-sponsor from 2016 on Monday and it is possible a third new sponsor could come on board to aid the team's ambitions to climb up into cycling's top-tier UCI WorldTour in the future.
They currently race in the second-tier UCI Pro Continental Tour, but it is expected that they will still receive wildcard invites to all of cycling's biggest races in 2016.
It is understood that the team will operate on a budget of £7.5m next year, a similar amount to the sum provided by MTN and Samsung in 2015. Most of the money supplied by Deloitte is expected to go towards the Cavendish package.
As part of the deal, MTN-Qhubeka will permit and support Cavendish's ambition to ride on the track at next summer's Olympic Games in Rio.
Cavendish's current contract with Etixx - Quick-Step expires at the end of the season.
Team Sky announced earlier on Monday that Eisel will leave the British squad at the end of the year, while Renshaw is already a team-mate of Cavendish's at Etixx - Quick-Step.