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Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) gets out of the saddle
British rider wraps up US win
Bradley Wiggins has reaffirmed his hopes of selection for Team Sky in this year’s Tour de France team after a convincing win in the Tour of California. Wiggins survived the final stage 8 to Thousand Oaks to seal Britain’s first overall win in the American race. The win marked Wiggins’ first overall title since his Tour of Britain success last year.
Team Sky’s selection for the Tour de France is likely to be finalised after the Dauphiné and Tour de Suisse in mid-June. However Wiggins has hit all his lines in recent months with impressive performances in Paris-Roubaix and his success state-side. On top of that he has tried to lay to rest any friction between him and Chris Froome.
"If I am fortunate enough to be in the Tour, it will be in support of Chris," Wiggins said after wrapping victory in the Tour of California.
"Chris wants to win his second Tour and, as the defending champion, everyone understands that, including myself," he told the BBC.
Wiggins’ win in the Tour of California was built around his stage win in the individual time trial to Folsom and then reinforced with dogged displays in the mountains. It’s arguably his best stage race performance since his 2012 Tour de France win.
At the finish of stage 8 the Olympic time trial champion paid tribute to the work his team had done over the race.
"I've said it every day but without those guys I wouldn’t be in this position. You can’t do it on your own and as strong as my performance was individually in the time trial, my team have taken the strain all week," he said, according to the Team Sky website.
"Those young Americans in my team, Joe, Ian and Danny have done a fantastic job - even today they didn’t give up the chase and came back after they’d been distanced on the climbs. This is a fantastic way to finish."
"This win is right up there in terms of satisfaction – to come here and have the reception we’ve had from the American public – it’s been unreal. It’s always an honour to wear a yellow jersey and I set my stall out to come and win the Tour of California, and I wanted to add my name to the guys who came before me. I’ve done that now and at 34 years old, it’s still nice to be winning on this stage."