Tour de France 2014: Sir Bradley Wiggins yet to decide his future despite reports that he will remain with Team Sky

Wiggins is preparing to compete in the Commonwealth Games but his Team Sky contract is up at the end of the year

Just over a week ago, Chris Froome was the man calling every single shot within Team Sky - and he was the overwhelming favourite to defend his Tour de France title.

Fast-forward nine days and the seemingly forgotten face of Bradley Wiggins is once again at the forefront of British cycling headlines.

They say a week is a long time in politics, and the same is true for cycling. As Froome nurses the multiple injuries that have knocked him out of the Tour, so Wiggins is preparing a new stage in his career - but it is not yet known whether it will be at Team Sky.

Reports in Italy suggested that the 2012 Tour de France winner wants to remain with his current team, but The Independent understands that he is yet to make a decision on his future.

A spokesman from the Wiggins camp told The Independent that while positive ongoing talks have taken place, no new deal has been signed, and he could wait until the end of autumn before making a decision.

The response comes after an Italian newspaper published quotes attributed to Wiggins in which it is claimed he said he would like to remain at Team Sky, but recognises that he is no longer a contender for the Grand Tours.

“I’m going to stay at Sky,” the report in Gazzetta dello Sport said.

Wiggins also said that his objectives have shifted from targeting high overall placings in Grand Tours to an attempt on the mythical Hour Record.

"It's true, I'm thinking about it (the Hour Record)," he said. Time-trialing has long been a strength of the multiple-times Olympic pursuit champion.

"My time as a Grand Tour rider is over. I'll still ride them but not to win them. I'll sign up now for this event next year. If Sky doesn't take me to the Tour, I'll be back," he added, revealing a sanguine attitude to the remainder of his career that has remained hidden up until now.

In the short-term, Wiggins will focus on competing for England at the Commonwealth Games in July. His late-season target is the Vuelta, which the injured Froome is also hoping to ride - potentially setting up the latest chapter in what has often been a bitter rivalry between Team Sky’s two best riders.

What is the Hour Record?

It’s one of cycling’s most mythical records, and also perhaps its simplest as a concept. As the name implies, the Hour Record is a measure of how far a cyclist can travel within a time limit of sixty minutes.

The theory may be easy to understand- go hell for leather for 3600 tortuous seconds- but the history of the Hour is anything but.

There are in fact two separate Hour Records. There’s the one set by cycling’s governing body, the UCI which must be carried out on a conventional road bike, and then there’s the Best Human Effort, confusingly titled because with this one, pretty much anything goes as far as technological innovations are concerned.

Eddy Merckx set a record of 49.431km in Mexico City on 25 October 1972 that would stand for twelve years, until Francesco Moser broke it with a distance of 51.151km.

Moser chose the same location of Mexico City as Merckx- the Hour is often attempted at altitude, because the thinner air provides more aerodynamic assistance.

The problem was that the Italian’s record was set using new-fangled disc wheels. In 1996 the UCI put all the records since Merckx’s 1972 attempt into the ‘Best Human Effort’ category.

That meant that the records set during the 1990s by the two Brits, Grame Obree and Chris Boardman were downgraded- because both had pushed the limits of bike design in achieving their distances.

In 2000, however, Boardman broke Merckx’s distance on a regular road bike by just 10m- an almost unbelievably small margin after an hour’s riding.

Just to add to the confusion, in May of this year the UCI announced plans to unify the two categories, ensuring that Boardman and Obree’s distances would be returned to the record books. But the record will remain the 49.700km set by the Czech Ondrej Sosenka in 2005- despite that being far behind Boardman’s best of 56.375km set in Manchester in 1996.

Cycling’s purest achievement is, ironically perhaps its hardest to properly understand. But if Wiggins does indeed attempt it, then he will need to break 48.700km to capture the record. That part at least is simple enough.

News
Jacqueline Bisset has claimed that young women today are obsessed with being 'hot', rather than 'charming', 'romantic' or 'beautiful'
people
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Affleck stars as prime suspect Nick Dunne in the film adaptation of Gone Girl
filmBen Affleck and Rosamund Pike excel in David Fincher's film, says Geoffrey Macnab
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
Sport
Frank Lampard and his non-celebration
premier leagueManchester City vs Chelsea match report from the Etihad Stadium
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvSeries 5 opening episode attracts lowest ratings since drama began
News
people
News
i100
Life and Style
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
techNew app offers 'PG alternative' to dating services like Tinder
Sport
Greg Dyke insists he will not resign as Football Association chairman after receiving a watch worth more than £16,000 but has called for an end to the culture of gifts being given to football officials
football
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Sport
premier league
Arts and Entertainment
Rachel, Chandler and Ross try to get Ross's sofa up the stairs in the famous 'Pivot!' scene
tv
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvOnly remaining original cast-member to leave crime series
Sport
Mario Balotelli celebrates his first Liverpool goal
premier leagueLiverpool striker expressed his opinion about the 5-3 thriller with Leicester - then this happened
Arts and Entertainment
Female fans want more explicit male sex in Game of Thrones, George R R Martin says
tvSpoiler warning: Star of George RR Martin's hit series says viewers have 'not seen the last' of him/her
News
i100
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

Nursery Nurse - Melton Mowbray

£7 - £8 per hour: Randstad Education Leicester: Randstad Education are current...

PE Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary PE Teacher (maternity cover) f...

English Intervention Teacher

£23000 - £33000 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: English Intervention Teac...

Teacher of Citizenship and RE

Negotiable: Randstad Education Leeds: Teacher of Citizenship and REMaternity L...

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments