Sir Bradley Wiggins' new team WIGGINS is 'fantastic' for Olympic medal hopes, says Shane Sutton
Last Updated: 09/01/15 11:23am
British Cycling chief Shane Sutton has described the creation of Sir Bradley Wiggins’ new team as “fantastic” for Britain’s prospects of winning gold in the men’s team pursuit at the Olympic Games.
WIGGINS, as the squad has been named, will race predominantly on the road in the UK but its main focus will be to prepare Wiggins and his team-mates for Rio 2016.
Six of the riders on the roster also race the team pursuit on the track - Steven Burke, Mark Christian, Jon Dibben, Owain Doull, Andy Tennant and Wiggins - while Iain Paton, Daniel Patten and Michael Thompson complete the nine-man line-up.
The team is sponsored by Sky and although it will operate independently of British Cycling, Sutton is confident Britain's gold-medal hopes will be improved by the project.
He told Sky Sports News HQ: “It’s fantastic news and gives us a great opportunity with our team pursuit squad moving forward to Rio with Brad.
“It’s a great partnership with Sky and this team allows the young riders of British Cycling to step up and ride alongside a Tour winner like Bradley, which can only be a massive inspiration to everybody within our programme.
“There are a lot of building blocks to go through, but inspiration is a major part of it and Brad does inspire the young guys in this programme.”
Wiggins will join up with his new team after leaving Team Sky on April 30.
Sir Dave Brailsford, the former British Cycling performance director and Wiggins’ current team principal at Team Sky, has welcomed the establishment of WIGGINS.
He said: "Bradley has written one of the greatest stories in British sport over the last 10 years. His exciting new project, WIGGINS, will undoubtedly have a lot to offer cycling in the UK on the road to Rio 2016 and beyond.
“It is a really positive move for the sport and further evidence – if any were needed – that cycling is continuing to go from strength to strength in the UK.”