Bradley Wiggins admits 'Chris Froome is a better Grand Tour rider' and says another Tour de France victory is unlikely

Britain's first ever Tour de France winner will revert to track cycling

Sir Bradley Wiggins admits there is little chance of him winning the Tour de France again as he prepares for a move back to track cycling.

The four-time Olympic champion won Le Tour in 2012 but missed the event this year due to injury and illness as Team Sky team-mate Chris Froome secured a second consecutive British victory.

Froome had been appointed team leader before Wiggins' absence was confirmed so it was highly unlikely the 33-year-old would have had the opportunity to claim a second title and he now admits his Grand Tour ambitions are all but over.

He told The Times: "I don't mind admitting that Chris is probably a better Grand Tour rider than me.

"He is a much better climber, he can time trial as well.

"He has age on his side, he has no kids. That's fine.

"If Chris wants to, he could potentially win five tours now. So if I want to win another tour, I'd probably have to leave the team."

Asked if he would ever leave, he added: "I love this team. This is my home. I'm not going to go, 'I want to be leader so I'm off'."

The decision by Team Sky to choose Froome as team leader for the 2013 Tour raised some eyebrows with both men claiming at one stage that they would lead the team.

Wiggins' injury troubles meant that the decision eventually became a formality but he admits that the row over who would lead the team did prove a distraction.

"At this team, everyone is encouraged to be as good as they can be," he said.

"I felt, as the defending champion, I was quite entitled to to put my hand up and say 'I would like to be considered for the leadership'.

"But if someone is chosen over me I am professional enough to do my job.

"I know that at the last press conference I gave before the Giro (d'Italia), saying that caused quite a stir from Chris' camp.

"I remember at the start of the Giro there was a lot of s*** and, to be honest, it affected me."

Looking ahead, Wiggins has declared that his focus will now be on attempting to claim a fifth Olympic gold medal in 2016.

Wiggins won gold medals on the track in 2004 and 2008 before claiming the time trial on the road in London last summer.

But it is a return to the velodrome that Wiggins is setting his sights on and he has already begun the process of getting his body back into shape for track competition.

"I'm going to continue to the next Olympics and try for a fifth gold on the track, that's the plan," he said.

"Having lost weight and muscle the last few years, I wouldn't be able to walk back into that team pursuit squad, so I am not taking it for granted but I am working towards that.

"It would be nice to finish the career with another Olympic gold."

PA

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
'I do think a woman's place is eventually in the home, but I see no harm in her having some fun before she gets there.'
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Chris Martin of Coldplay performs live for fans at Enmore Theatre on June 19, 2014 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)
music
Sport
Dave Mackay lifts the FA Cup in 1967 having skippered Spurs to victory
football
Life and Style
Marie had fake ID, in the name of Johanna Koch, after she evaded capture by the Nazis in wartime Berlin
historyOne woman's secret life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
News
Jihadi John
newsMonikers like 'Jihadi John' make the grim sound glamorous
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Web Content Administrator

£14000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Web Content Administrator is required ...

SThree: Recruitment Resourcer

£20000 - £21000 per annum + uncapped commission: SThree: As a graduate you are...

Recruitment Genius: Lift and Elevator Service Manager - Birmingham

£38000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...

Circles South East Youth Service: Youth Services Volunteer

this is an unpaid voluntary position: Circles South East Youth Service: LOOKIN...

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn