The HTC-HighRoad rider, a 15-time Tour de France stage-winner, will be considered a major rival to fellow sprint specialist — and former teammate — Andre Greipel, who romped to his second Australian title this year.
“It’s great that I’ll be starting my season at the Santos Tour Down Under,” said Cavendish.
“I have been to Australia six or seven times and I love going there. After spending time again there recently at World Championships, I’m eager to get back there for some more racing.”
Armstrong, 39, has named next year’s Tour Down Under around Adelaide as his last international race, ruling out any attempt at an eighth Tour de France victory.