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Mark Renshaw training on track to boost sprint speed for 2012

After years of leading out Mark Cavendish, Mark Renshaw is looking forward to sprinting for himself with Rabobank in 2012. Photo: AFP (File)

Mark Renshaw says he relishes the opportunity to take his own chances in the bunch sprints after his high-profile move to Rabobank for the 2012 season.

The star lead-out man will slot into the role of top sprinter for the Dutch outfit and will eventually square off against his former boss, Mark Cavendish, who will ride for Team Sky next season.

“I think they won’t put so much emphasis on GC objectives for next year and I suppose they’ll give me a bit more of a free rein and maybe I get one, two guys to help out and hopefully get some more results,” Renshaw told SBS’s Cycling Central.

Renshaw said he’s already been working on the track during the off-season to increase his leg speed and have more of an edge finishing off the sprints.

Speaking to SBS, the 29-year-old said moving to the Dutch outfit was his best option in the wake of the collapse of HTC-Highroad, which folded at the end of this season.

“Once we found out they were stopping it was a bit of a shock because before they announced that the team was stopping pretty much they’d asked me to re-sign for another two years,” he said.

“Cav’, he didn’t sign for a long time but basically I had the offers on the table and Rabobank – the all-round offer was better, much better.

“In the end, I didn’t want to wait around all season to make a decision. Cav wasn’t sure what he was doing so. … He was having a difficult time sorting out his contract and …Rabobank was by far the better option for the chance to take race wins.:

Renshaw, who will travel to Holland this week for Rabobank’s team presentation, said he will make his season debut at the Aussie national road race championships in January and then race the Tour Down Under.

Next, he’ll race to defend his title at the Tour of Qatar and return to Europe to focus on suitable spring classics such as Ghent-Wevelgem, Scheldeprijs, Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne as well as Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo.

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