New Hour Record holder Bradley Wiggins will make a rare appearance on the road as he headlines at RideLondon this August. It will be Wiggins’ second road race for his eponymous team WIGGINS, after making his debut with the Continental outfit in the Tour de Yorkshire at the beginning of May. It will also be his first competitive appearance since breaking the Hour Record at the start of this month.
“It’s always fantastic to race on home roads and this race is very special,” said Wiggins. “My team is really looking forward to it. I was amazed how many people were out watching last year in that appalling weather. The whole Prudential RideLondon festival shows how much cycling has grown in this country.”
Wiggins made his debut at RideLondon last year, which was won by Adam Blythe – riding for NFTO at the time – in hugely varying weather conditions. In March it was announced that fellow Britain Mark Cavendish is due to make his debut at the race, after he was forced to miss it following his crash on stage 1 of the Tour de France.
It is third edition of the race, which initially began as a test event for the Olympic Games. This year will feature a tougher route than previous editions with an extra circuit through Dorking, which takes in the race’s highest point of Leith Hill. The organisers are hoping that the Wiggins factor can bring yet more fans to the road.
“Every race wants Wiggins,” said Race director Mick Bennett. “He now has rock star status and generates massive excitement wherever he races. We expect hundreds of thousands of spectators to line the route to cheer him on. His team is packed with great athletes likely to feature in the Team Pursuit in the Rio Games next year and they should perform well in a race of this nature.”
Since leaving team Sky at the end of April, Wiggins has been focussing on the track with his intention of ending his career on the boards at the Rio Olympic Games and he will ride the opening round of the track World Cup in Cali, Colombia. It was rumoured that Wiggins might make an appearance at the British national championships next weekend, however this seems not to be the case. Wiggins is due to go to Italy at the end of the month for some high altitude training.