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Cavendish finishes eighth in Olympic Madison

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Richard Allen asks Team Isle of Man coach Mike Doyle about his thoughts after the event
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Published Date: 19 August 2008
MARK Cavendish and Bradley Wiggins finished equal eighth in the Olympic track cycling Madison event in Beijing this morning.
The pair were regarded by many observers as favourites for the event but struggled to gain a foothold on the 200-lap race with Wiggins, in particular, showing signs of fatigue after claiming two golds, in the men's individual and team pursuit events, already at the Games.

Argentina took the gold medal with Spain taking silver and Russia bronze.

The GB pairing finished behind Belgium, Germany, Denmark and France and equal eighth with the Netherlands.

Paul Phillips, whose daughter Melissa is Cavendish's fiancee, hosted a party at the Shore Hotel in Laxey for friends, family and regulars to watch the race.

A special beer called Cav's Olympic Dream had been brewed for the occasion but celebrations went flat when the Laxey sports star's hopes of a medal were dashed.

But Paul spoke on behalf of everyone in Laxey when he said they were still proud of Mark and what he had achieved in his remarkable career.

'We are all very proud of him and there will be another day and another race,' said Paul.

He said that Wiggins looked tired after his efforts in the individual and team pursuit events but that no one could complain given Wiggins' heroics in the Games.

'Both Bradley and Mark are brilliant riders but they just didn't gel today,' added Mr Phillips.

His daughter Melissa was in Beijing with Mark's mum Adele to watch the race.


Cavendish had won Commonwealth and World titles on the track prior to today's event.

In 2005 he won the World Madison title with GB team mate Rob Hayles, a year later he won gold for Team Isle of Man in the Commonwealth Games scratch race in Melbourne.

This year he and Wiggins won gold at the World Track Championship Madison in Manchester.

As well as track titles Cavendish has won an astonishing 22 road races in just over 18 months as a professional rider.

This year he won two stages of the Tour of Italy and four stages of the Tour de France.

Cavendish will now focus on the road and next year he will be targetting Europe's prestigious spring classics including the Paris-Roubaix race which is renowned as the toughest single day race in the world.

For the rest of 2008 he will be in action on the road including the Tour of Britain on September 7 to 14 which will give fans a rare chance to see him racing in the UK.

>> Mark Cavendish handed the freedom of Douglas

Email with your reaction


I cannot beleive this........ the only 2 cyclists in the Team GB cycle team not to win medals were....MANX But at the same time we are going to honour this with one of them getting the Freedom of the Town!!! So lets get this in perspective with previous recipients of the award who include Sir Winston Churchill and Field Marshal Montgomery who have stamped their place in history. I dont think we can draw comparisons. Burst the bubble and get back to reality please, he had a good crack at it but there is always London in 2012.

I agree with RR up to a point, what about poor David Knight....??? World Champion Enduro, yes WORLD CHAMPION time and again and his feats are almost totally ignored on this Island, it is a disgrace.....!!!!

Whilst Cav and Bradley Wiggins did not come up to the nations expectations, there is no doubt they were trying their best, and there are host of things people should consider before being critical. That Wiggins should be below par is not unusual. It's more an emotional reaction to success so far – look at Nicole Cooke in the time trial after her road race gold, or Rebecca Romero in the points race after her pursuit success. Either Wiggins or Cav. could have some injury or bug, not serious enough to stop them but enough to put a medal out of reach. Also races like the Points and the Madison are much more difficult to control than shorter events like the sprint and pursuit races. People can ride to make sure you lose, rather than try to win themselves, and after the GB cycling success at Beijing there would be plenty of teams in the Madison with the view that the medal should go anywhere but Britain. In any other year today's Madison result for GB would have been accepted as being about par for the course, but after the Worlds in March, Cav.s 4 Tour stage wins and Brads 2 gold's at Beijing, public expectation was simply too high. Commiserate with them, and wish them well the next time they compete together. Regards
JOHN RICHARDS, Louth, Lincolnshire

While I'm behind the provision of a Velodrome on the Island, I think it's crazy to build a new one when there's already a purpose built banked cycling track in onchan that's not used. Surely it'd be far cheaper to move the Stock cars off the inner track at Onchan to a new imple track at Strang and update Onchan Stadium back to standards for cycling? This is, after all, why Onchan Stadium was built. Onchan Commissioners need their bumps feeling for rejecting the offer from the Cycling Association.

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  • Last Updated: 21 August 2008 2:22 PM
  • Source: n/a
  • Location: Isle of Man


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