Mark Cavendish
Mark Cavendish timed his finish perfectly to take his first win since February 2018

Mark Cavendish won his first race in three years with victory on stage two of the Tour of Turkey.

The 35-year-old Briton, back with Deceuninck-Quick Step six years after leaving the Belgian team, produced a perfectly timed late sprint to pip Belgian Jasper Philipsen on the line.

“Just to get back to winning after what I’ve been through in the last couple of years is truly incredible,” he said.

“It’s incredible, it’s super nice and I never get tired of this feeling.”

It was a first win for Cavendish, who was considering retirement last season before re-joining Deceuninck-Quick Step on a one-year-deal, since the third stage of the Dubai Tour in 2018.

“Everyone on the team was incredibly committed today and that was very important,” he said.

“Philipsen jumped early and had a small gap, but I had enough to make up ground and I must say I was quite surprised at how quickly I came in the final meters of the stage.”

Cavendish has won 30 stages at the Tour de France and is considered one of the best sprinters in history, but has been omitted from the race for the past two years as he has struggled for form.

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