Sky rider disappointed witheld prize money story was revealed
Bradley Wiggins [Sky] says that his big aim for this season is to make it back into Sky’s Tour de France squad.
“I’d love to be back at the Tour de France,” Wiggins told Sky Sports News. “I missed it last year and I was watching it on the TV. When you see it from the outside, you see just how great the Tour de France is.”
Wiggins, the winner of the 2012 edition, didn’t ride the last Tour de France due to a knee injury that he exacerbated during the Giro d'Italia. If he does regain a spot in Sky's Tour squad, it will more than likely be as a support rider for defending champion Chris Froome.
This year’s race will be a big one for the British squad, with the race starting in Yorkshire. “The opportunity, with it starting in the UK, to be back there as an ex-winner will be fantastic,” Wiggins explained.
“Having two British winners at the Tour de France, with it starting in the UK will be quite an experience for us all.”
There are still questions over whether the two riders will be able to work together. Former Sky directeur sportif Sean Yates revealed in his book It’s all about the bike that Wiggins felt betrayed by Froome’s apparent attack during the 2012 Tour de France and had to be convinced not to leave.
Wiggins reportedly withheld Froome’s share of the winnings until just before the World Championships last season. The Briton looked to avoid the subject when questioned by Sky Sports News. “There’s a whole story behind that,” he responded.
“I think the thing with that is that it was an internal thing. It’s disappointing that things like that become public knowledge. Because there’s reasons for all the things that go on. Yeah, it’s a stage old one that…”
Since the 2012 Tour de France, Wiggins and Froome have hardly raced together, and they will appear on the same start list for the first time this season at Tirreno-Adriatico.
There were high expectations on Wiggins last season, after a year that saw him take victories at the Tour de France, the time trial at the London 2012 Olympics and Paris-Nice. However, 2013 proved to an operation in character building, with disappointments coming at the Giro d’Italia and the Giro del Trentino.
Wiggins spent much of the season on the sidelines, but there were a few positive notes. The Sky rider took overall victory at the Tour of Britain and a silver medal in the time trial at the World Championships. With a few weeks to go before his 2014 campaign kicks off, Wiggins is raring to go.
“Yeah, I’m in a good place at the moment,” he said. “I want to get off to a flying start like I did in 2012. I want to be performing well all early season. I’ve got some good goals in the early season, with the Tour of California in May.
“It’s something that I want to start doing, performing well out there in America. Beyond that, to be back in the Tour de France and back in the team, in whatever capacity, alongside the defending champion Chris.”
Wiggins will start his season at the Challenge Mallorca on February 9.
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