World Championship withdrawal 'gutting' for Mark Cavendish
Mark Cavendish admitted ruling himself out of next weekend's 2017 UCI Road World Championships was a gutting decision to make, after failing to recover from the broken shoulder that ended his Tour de France campaign.
The Manx Missile had been targeting next Sunday's race in Norway as a main focal point of his calendar, but was forced to rule himself out of selection with injury still rearing its ugly head.
That came more than two months ago during this year's Le Tour, breaking his right shoulder after a collision with world champion Peter Sagan as early as stage four.
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The 32-year-old had separated the same shoulder in the race three years previous but, with this blow ruling him out of the World Championships, it has proved a bitter pill to swallow for Cavendish.
An abandonment of Sunday's final Tour of Britain stage also fell Cavendish's way, though he is expected to be back in action in three races across Belgium and France this weekend.
"I am gutted to say I won't be representing Great Britain this year at the World Road Race Championships in Bergen, Norway," the 2011 road race world champion posted on social media.
"It was a goal I'd set to try and win this year, on a course that suits me at my peak and the strength in depth we have in the Great Britain Cycling Team.
"As always, I'll be supporting all my friends and colleagues as they strive for our next World Champ stripes after Lizzie Deignan's dominant ride in Richmond, two years ago.
"Good luck to you all and stay safe."