British rider Bradley Wiggins, gold medalist in the individual pursuit at the 2004 Olympics, has set his sights on wearing the Tour de France yellow jersey after the prologue of the 2006 edition.
"Winning the prologue is my number-one goal for the coming season," Wiggins told the BBC. "Putting that yellow jersey on is the pinnacle of any cyclist's career - more so even than Olympic gold."
Long considered Britain's most promising young rider, Wiggins delivered on that promise on the track, winning silver and bronze medals in Athens as well as his pursuit gold. He was not selected by Credit Agricole for the 2005 Tour, but says his new team, Cofidis, is backing him for the 2006 race.
"The new team are really behind me for winning the prologue," he said, "and it certainly played a part in the move. I felt I should have been included in Credit Agricole's team at the last Tour. At the time I was in really good form but that's part and parcel of professional cycling."
The 2005 Tour began with a 19km time trial that might perhaps have been a bit long for a rider with a pursuit background. The 2006 edition's 7km prologue should be more to the liking of Wiggins and other prologue specialists such as Bradley McGee.
"The opener at the Tour de France plays perfectly into my hands," said Wiggins. "It's the sort of distance I won Olympic gold over. It'll be exciting to see what form I'm in and what happens. And I'm going there with the sole purpose of winning that, which I know could come down to just a hundredth-of-a-second."