Mark Cavendish has initial talks with Jonathan Vaughters about a potential transfer to EF Education-EasyPost from next season.
Cavendish is not in Patrick Lefevere’s plans for the 2023 season, but the British sprinter does not want to retire yet. He hopes to win another stage in the Tour de France, in order to take the record number of stage wins in the Tour de France.
“Listen, I like Cav and I think that he would be a great story, and interesting to have on the team but there’s certainly no contract,” Vaughters said. “Maybe Mark and I have different viewpoints on how things would work together but he’s a smart guy and I’ve actually talked to him a bunch over the last month. I like him. There could be a way of working together but as of right now the pieces don’t seem to be coming together. I’ve talked to him though.”
“If he got that Eddy Merkcx record, he’s an icon in the sport. You can always make room but there’s lots of questions like do we have the guys to lead him out. Chasing that win is not an easy thing to do,” Vaughters added.
EF Education will announce the arrival of Richard Carapaz from Ineos soon as the American team will focus more on stage races.
“We’ll have a pretty large strategic shift for our team next year, for sure. We’ll have some good new talent coming aboard. We’ve had a couple of years where we’ve had to be lean because of the pandemic and the impact that it had on the travel industry. It’s coming back really strong so next year we’re going to be able to get after it a bit more,” said Vaughters.
“I don’t want the spirit of the team to shift to totally focusing on the GC, so that you forget everything else that you’re actually good at but I think we’ll have more of a GC focus than we’ve had in a bit.”