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Mark Cavendish ruled out of British National Road Championship with bronchitis

Last Updated: 26/06/14 11:18am

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Mark Cavendish is focusing on recovering in time for the Tour de France

Mark Cavendish is focusing on recovering in time for the Tour de France

Sky Bet

Mark Cavendish has been ruled out of this weekend's British National Road Championships with bronchitis.

The 29-year-old sprinter has opted not to defend his road race title on Sunday in order to concentrate on getting fit for next month's Tour de France.

"The current British champion is busy with a bout of bronchitis that began during the last stages of the Tour de Suisse," his team, Omega Pharma Quick-Step, said in a statement. "As a precautionary measure Mark will not participate on Sunday and will continue training in Italy prior to the Tour de France."

Cavendish said he was disappointed, but was not prepared to take any risks with the Tour de France just over a week away.

"I'm sad because, as current champion, I would really like to defend the title," he said. "I would have liked to honour the race and this jersey that I wore for all of 2014 so far, which allowed me to represent my country proudly.

"I think it's wiser, however, to not take any risks and focus on absolute, 100 per cent recovery, and continue to train in preparation for the Tour de France. I talked with the race organisers and they understood my situation perfectly."

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