Wiggins says he wants to achieve rare Giro/Tour double
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Monday, December 17, 2012

Wiggins says he wants to achieve rare Giro/Tour double

by VeloNation Press at 6:25 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France, Giro d'Italia
SPOTY winner sets high target for 2013

Bradley Wiggins The feat hasn’t been achieved since Marco Pantani’s 1998 triumphs and is regarded as one of the toughest in cycling, but Bradley Wiggins has revealed that he is determined to try to win both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France.

The Briton had previously said that he was likely to target the Italian tour in 2013, even if it made the defence of his title more difficult. However more recently he said that he would try to repeat his Tour de France success, prompting people to conclude that he had dropped his preference for the Giro in the coming season.

Last night Wiggins clarified his position: he has his eyes on both.

“I've always wanted to win a second Tour. I'm the defending champion. I want to try and win the Giro d'Italia and win the Tour de France behind it. People say it can't be done, winning two Tours. So let's have a go at it.”

Wiggins was speaking to the Guardian after winning the British Sports Personality of the Year title in London. He was one of three cyclists nominated for the honour, with Olympic medallists Chris Hoy and Sarah Storey being the other two, and dominated the voting.

The Tour winner beat two other Olympic gold medallists to take the honours, finishing ahead of heptathlete Jessica Ennis and the tennis player Andy Murray. Wiggins secured 30.25 percent of the votes, with Ennis on 22.92 percent and Murray on 14.17 percent.

Cycling’s success was underlined by Sky Principal Dave Brailsford taking the Coach of the Year award. He also oversaw Britain’s successful Olympic cycling campaign and was deemed the most meritorious of those up for nomination. Speaking after the announcement, he said that the result was a reflection of how the sport has grown.

“When I got into cycling, it seemed like an odd thing to be doing. All my friends thought it was an odd thing to be doing,” he explained. “To go from that to where the sport stands in British culture now is remarkable.”

Wiggins recently spent a period of time training in Mallorca and is encouraged by how he felt there. That has fuelled his ambition and given him the confidence to think of the Giro/Tour double, but the fact that it has only been achieved by seven riders before – Fausto Coppi, Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault, Stephen Roche, Miguel Indurain and Marco Pantani – and because Alberto Contador was unable to do so when he tried in 2011 means that the scale of the task is clear.

However his previous coach Shane Sutton believes that he can raise his game further. “He has had an extraordinary year and do you know something - I do not think we have seen the very best of him on the road yet,” he wrote in the Telegraph.

The upcoming season will show if that is indeed the case.


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