Commonwealth Games 2014: Sir Bradley Wiggins among strong English cycling team

The multiple Olympic gold medallist is not expected to ride in this year's Tour de France

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The Independent Online

It is a line-up to spread smiles across the harassed faces of the organisers of next month’s Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games, even if it is one that will sport English jerseys.

Sir Bradley Wiggins was on Wednesday named among eight Olympic champions named to ride for England. Inside the Sir Chris Hoy velodrome the likes of Laura Trott, Jason Kenny and Dani King head the strongest English team sent to the Games. It may not make for easy viewing for Hoy in his own arena but this selection of stars from the London Olympics is a further fillip to the organisers following Mo Farah’s commitment. All they need now is for Usain Bolt to declare himself fit.

If Wiggins does not make Sky’s Tour de France squad he may also compete on the track, although a return to the velodrome remains more likely next year with the aim of competing in the Rio Olympics in 2016. This will be his first Commonwealth appearance in a dozen years – he has three silvers from Manchester and Kuala Lumpur.

Wiggins, who will lead Sky in the Tour of Switzerland from Sunday, has written off his chances of competing in the Tour de France, though Shane Sutton, Britain’s track coach, suggested he may yet get the call for France. “Brad’s still in contention for the Tour,” Sutton said. “I think they go down to 13 names in the next week or so and Brad’s on that list.

“He’s off to [Switzerland] as part of Tour de France preparation so we can’t see Brad on the track at this moment in time, but if he misses out on the Tour then I’m quite sure that he’d soon transfer to the track. He needs to keep touch on the track because he’s stated clearly his ambition is to link up with the boys and win a gold medal in Rio.”

Chris Froome, who on Wednesday maintained his 12-second lead over Alberto Contador in the Critérium du Dauphiné, turned down a Glasgow berth as the Games time trial is only four days after the Tour finishes, with the road race  on 3 August.