No last minute Beijing dash for Wiggins, Rodriguez secures WorldTour victory
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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

No last minute Beijing dash for Wiggins, Rodriguez secures WorldTour victory

by Shane Stokes at 9:54 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Visa requirement means change of mind impossible

Joaquim RodriguezBradley Wiggins’ chance of winning the season-long UCI WorldTour has ended, with the Briton bumped down to second place at the weekend by Il Lombardia winner Joaquim Rodriguez and being unable to take part in the Tour of Beijing.

The Tour de France winner had been nine points clear prior to the start of the race but didn’t ride Saturday’s Classic. Rodriguez broke clear on the final climb and soloed to victory, clocking up 100 points and moving far ahead of Wiggins.

The new total puts Rodriguez on 692 points, Wiggins on 601 and third-placed Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma Quick Step) on 410, well out of contention.

With 100 points on offer for overall victory in the Tour of Beijing plus six per stage win, it would still be mathematically possible for Wiggins to retake the WorldTour lead, particularly as Rodriguez is not riding.

However Team Sky press officer Dario Cioni has ruled out any journey to China for the rider. “I think there’s no chance – he has no visa,” he told VeloNation.

Wiggins has had a more spectacular season than Rodriguez, in terms of the scale of his wins. He triumphed in the Tour de France, Paris-Nice, Tour de Romandie and Criterium du Dauphine. However he has not taken any WorldTour points since the end of the Tour de France.

At that point, Rodriguez – who finished second in the Giro but missed the Tour – had just 404 points to Wiggins’ 601. However he’s ramped up his total since then, with the key results including eighth in the Clásica de San Sebastián, three stage wins and third overall in the Vuelta a España plus last week’s victory in Il Lombardia.

Essentially, his overall consistency throughout the year outweighs Wiggins’ dominance in his targeted events. Now, with the Tour of Beijing not on the programme of either rider, the individual points table will end as it now stands.

That means that Rodriguez will become WorldTour champion for the second time, two years after he won in 2010.


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