The Manxman already confirmed his participation in the race in December, and the Colombian Cycling Federation has revealed the full line-up that will accompany Cavendish in the six-day event, which takes place from February 6-11.
Cavendish will be able to rely on the support of Mørkøv, Cees Bol and Davide Ballerini, the three riders who are likely to form the core of his sprint train at the Tour de France in July. The Astana Qazaqstan sextet is completed by Alexey Lutsenko and home rider Harold Tejada.
The race is set to be Mørkøv’s first for Astana since arriving from Soudal-QuickStep during the off-season. Ballerini, who previously spent a season with Astana in 2019, also re-joined the team from QuickStep this winter.
“I’m part of the Cavendish group for the Tour and I can’t wait for us to start racing,” Ballerini told BiciPro last month. “When we go to the training camp in Colombia and then when we start to test the train [in races], we’ll have an idea of how we’ve worked.”
Cavendish and his teammates are set to spend almost a month in Colombia. The Colombian Cycling Federation notes that they base themselves in Rionegro, near Medellín, for a week after their arrival on January 15, before moving on to the department of Boyacá ahead of the race.
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Cavendish is likely to ride the UAE Tour in late February before racing at Tirreno-Adriatico in March.
Astana Qazaqstan are one of three WorldTour teams lining up in the Tour Colombia, alongside Movistar and EF Education-EasyPost. Egan Bernal (Ineos Grenadiers) is set to ride as part of a Colombian national selection that may also feature the Bora-Hansgrohe duo of Sergio Higuita and Daníel Martínez.
The Tour Colombia returns to the calendar after a three-year hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic and funding issues, and the event will take place at high altitude in the departments of Boyacá and Cundinamarca.
The opening stages are centred around Tunja and Duitama, the site of the 1995 World Championships, while the race will also visit Egan Bernal’s hometown of Zipaquirá. There is a summit finish on Alto del Vino on the penultimate day ahead of the final stage to Bogotá.