Tour of Britain: Sir Bradley Wiggins to lead Team Sky at home stage race
Sir Bradley Wiggins will lead Team Sky at this month's Tour of Britain.
Last Updated: 06/09/13 12:51pm
The 2012 Tour de France winner has been named as the spearhead of a six-strong line-up also boasting fellow Englishmen Ian Stannard and Josh Edmondson, Austria's Bernhard Eisel, Australia's Mathew Hayman and Spain's David Lopez.
It is the second consecutive season Wiggins has ridden the race, which this year runs from September 15-22 and includes stages in Scotland, Wales and England.
"I'm really looking forward to the Tour of Britain," Wiggins said. "It is a race I'm fond of and it is nice to see it growing in stature each year.
"The crowds and the roads make it special and it is always very humbling to see the fantastic support that we get from the public.
"The Tour of Britain is always a tough event and I'm looking forward to getting started."
The race will act as Wiggins's final preparation for the time trial world championship in Florence on September 25, where he is set to fight out a potentially thrilling battle with reigning champion Tony Martin and four-time champion Fabian Cancellara.
"I'm coming into the race feeling really good," Wiggins added. "It finishes in close proximity to the world time trial championship, which is my main late-season goal."
The 2013 Tour of Britain starts in Peebles, Scotland, and visits the Lake District, Snowdonia and Dartmoor before finishing with a sprint stage in central London.
This year is the 10th anniversary of the race and has attracted its biggest-ever field, with 19 teams and 114 riders taking part.
Stannard, a former British national road race champion, says the event's growing stature makes it an integral part of the season.
He said: "The Tour of Britain has become a massive event in the cycling calendar and I'm really excited to be racing at home.
"There is a real enthusiasm for cycling at the moment, especially following Brad and Froomey's Tour wins and the Olympics, so I'm really looking forward to competing again on British roads.
"We race all over the world, but it is always nice to compete in front of your home fans. With such a high-level race in the UK naturally I want to be there."
Last year's Tour of Britain winner, Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, had already revealed he would not be part of the Team Sky squad.