Mark Cavendish of the United Kingdom at the start of the 108th Tour de France 2021, leg 18, 129.7 km leg from Pau to Luz-Ardiden 1715m, July 15, 2021 in Luz-Ardiden, France.
Chris Greiten | Velo | Getty Images
Cyclist Mark Cavendish, who has the record for the most victories in the stages of the Tour de France, Wednesday reported that he and his family were victims of a violent robbery during a home invasion two weeks ago, as he recovered from serious injuries in a car accident.
In a Twitter post asking the public for help in identifying the attackers with the knives, Cavendish detailed the robbery that took place in the early morning of November 27 at his home in Essex, England.
The robbery came six days after he broke two ribs and suffered a puncture in his lung on November 21 when he crashed in the final race of the Madison race at the Six Days of Ghent track bike race in Belgium.
It was at the end of the year when Cavendish, long regarded as one of the greatest sprinters in road racing, reached one of the the most amazing personal comebacks in cycling history in France.
“Shortly after coming out of intensive care, 4 masked gunmen broke into our house while we were sleeping, threatened my wife and children, and brutally attacked me,” the 36-year-old Isle of Man tweeted.
“Under threat of a knife, they began to search our property,” Cavendish wrote.
“Among what was stolen were 2 watches with great feeling and value. But much, much worse, what was taken was the sense of security, protection, privacy and dignity that my young family and everyone else are entitled to in their own home, ”he added.
“The effect this nightmare has on my family is already evident,” Cavendish wrote before adding that “I ask anyone who can help us with information,” call the number he tweeted.
Cavendish is a famous cyclist. He has won three UCI Track Cycling World Championships and 52 stage victories in the three-week Grand Tour of Road Racing.
He won his first Tour de France stage, the most prestigious of the Grand Tours, in 2008 with four stage wins.
Cavendish had several years of racing failures after being diagnosed with the Epstein-Barr virus in 2017 and again in 2018. He also suffered from clinical depression.
Cavendish did not race in the Tour de France for two years. He was included in the Deceuninck-Quick-Step squad just for this event this summer almost at the last minute after another heat was dropped from the squad.
A few months earlier, Deceuninck-Quick-Step boss Patrick Lefebvre agreed to return Cavendish to the team only if the rider forced his sponsors to pay his contract. Lefeverve told him that the team did not have the budget to pay him.
Cavendish then stunned the cycling world by winning four stages of the 2021 Tour de France, which earned him 34 stage wins.
At the same time, he set a 46-year record of victories at the stages of the Tour, owned by Eddie Merckx, Belgian, most successful professional male cyclist. Cavendish nearly broke the record on the last day of the Tour, placing a very close third in the finish line at the Champs Elysees in Paris.
Cavendish also won the Tour’s green jersey, presented to the rider who wins the competition with the most points.
Slovenian racer Tadej Pogakar won the Tour de France general classification for the second year in a row, with the fastest cumulative time in approximately 3,500 kilometers of races.
“Mark Cavendish is the greatest sprinter in Tour and cycling history,” Tour de France Director Christian Prudhomme said during the event. “His comeback is amazing.”
Quick step confirmed that the team and Cavendish completed a one-year contract renewal on Tuesday – the day before the cyclist revealed the robbery at his home.