Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 31 August 2014

The wheel of fate even turns for Bradley Wiggins

NAPLES, ITALY - MAY 04:  Bradley Wiggins of Sky Procycling and Great Britain arrives to sign on for the start of stage one of the 2013 Giro d'Italia from Naples to Naples on May 4, 2013 in Naples, Italy.  (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
NAPLES, ITALY - MAY 04: Bradley Wiggins of Sky Procycling and Great Britain arrives to sign on for the start of stage one of the 2013 Giro d'Italia from Naples to Naples on May 4, 2013 in Naples, Italy. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

Sir Bradley Wiggins would not be the man he is if he didn't believe in his right to win everything that is put before him. However, in the case of the Tour de France, which is also known as La Grande Boucle – the Big Loop – he should really remember that, as in life, what goes round also comes round.

In the killer zone of the mountains, it has never been a secret that it is here where Wiggins is in most need of assistance.

This was provided brilliantly, if sometimes edgily, by the natural-born climber Chris Froome last summer. Now it is time for Froome to collect his reward, and the statement of Sky Team leader David Brailsford that this indeed remains the policy of the team is both timely and, from the point of view of fair play, extremely welcome.

So Brailsford announces that team policy is to give unto Wiggins what is his, which this year is the formidable Giro d'Italia, to which he has made a predictably brilliant start, and leave Froome his best chance of winning the race in which he has already made one utterly decisive contribution.

The fine Dutch rider Hennie Kuiper, who won Olympic gold in the road race and twice won an ultimate test of a rider's nerve and guts, the Alpe D'Huez stage of the Tour de France, once said that it is so hard in the mountains "the snow turns dark in your eyes".

Maybe this is why Sir Bradley may have briefly confused something that should really be written in black and white.

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