“We’ve had a successful year in the sense that we’ve won a lot of bike races and I’ve led the Giro, but people don’t remember that. It’s all about the Tour.”
In a sport where the competitors more often than not remain tight-lipped when faced with difficult questions, it’s refreshing to read an interview with a pro cyclist prepared to give an honest account of themselves.
Bradley Wiggins’ interview in this month’s issue of Procycling magazine has left me with a renewed respect for Wiggo. I’ve always held him in high regard, but after Brad was dropped so easily on the climb to Avoriaz at the Tour I have to admit to losing my faith somewhat.
I was never really convinced that the Maillot Jaune was a realistic aim in his first season as a potential GC contender, especially with the parcours of this year’s Tour, though I certainly had high hopes that Brad could snatch third spot on the podium.
But, you know what? Bradley Wiggins lead a Grand Tour this year, and that’s a pretty fantastic thing to be able to say. And as much as I enjoy the Tour, I love the Giro.
OK, so Team Sky shot themselves in the foot by placing all the emphasis of the season’s success on the outcome of the Tour, but it doesn’t take anything away from Brad’s stage win in Amsterdam and the subsequent day in the Maglia Rosa.
Anyone who’s followed his career, even in passing, will know that Brad’s never been backwards in coming forward, but to be as open and frank in his assessment of Team Sky’s debut season in the pro peloton as he is in the interview is to be admired. Chapeau, sir.
It’s also exciting to read that Wiggo’s plans for next season include Paris-Roubaix, my favourite race. To see Brad first across the line at Roubaix Velodrome would definitely be worthy of another poster…
You can read an abridged version of the feature over at Cyclingnews. Better still, buy the magazine.