“Cycling fever” is being blamed for someone making off with Bradley Wiggins’ Great Britain training kit from the hotel in Surrey where he is preparing for tomorrow’s Olympic time trial. While inconvenient, the disappearance of the Tour de France champion’s kit on Sunday evening hasn’t taken his focus away from the business at hand - winning the fourth Olympic gold medal of his career tomorrow in the individual time trial.
A medal of any colour would take Wiggins’ Olympic haul to seven and make him Great Britain’s most successful Olympian ever in terms of total medals won. Sir Chris Hoy will also have a chance to reach that total in the Velodrome at the weekend, and unlike Wiggins can also match Sir Steve Redgrave’s record for a Briton of five Olympic golds.
Wiggins’ training kit vanished from a changing room at the Foxhills Hotel in Ottershaw, Surrey, while the 32-year-old was using the sauna and shower facilities there, reports the BBC.
In a statement, the hotel said: "Upon returning back to the locker room it seems that cycling fever has well and truly hit the Surrey club as the Official Team GB training lycra were nowhere to be seen. It seems an over-zealous fan has scored a fantastic London 2012 souvenir."
Great Britain’s road cyclists cycling team had been staying at the hotel ahead of the weekend’s road races, with Wiggins, Chris Froome, Lizzie Armitstead and Emma Pooley staying on for the time trials tomorrow.
Looking ahead to the individual time trial, Wiggins said: “I have 100 per cent faith in the training Tim [Kerrison] has set me and it is more mental than physical. I think that I have done enough now to realise that there is no reason it is suddenly all going to collapse on Tuesday night.
“My performances all year have been consistent so I have no reason to think that is going to change, so that comes with age and experience.”
Wiggins is an odd-on favourite to win gold tomorrow ahead of world champion Tony Martin, with defending champion Fabian Cancellara only rated third in the betting after his crash in the road race on Saturday.
Outside that trio, Tour de France runner-up Chris Froome, who finished second to his Team Sky colleague Wiggins in both of the long time trials at that race earlier this month, is seen as the most likely rider to take a medal.
“All I can do really is go in there and give it my best shot,” said Froome. “I think Brad is in the perfect stead for that and the course suits him really well.”
In the women’s race which takes place tomorrow morning over a 29 kilometre course, German world champion Judith Arndt is seen as the rider to beat, with the course not suiting the strengths of the woman she succeeded to the rainbow jersey, Emma Pooley of Great Britain.
Pooley, who took silver in Beijing behind Kristin Armstrong of the USA, insisted: “I’ll do my best and I’m quite happy with how I have been training. If I have given it everything I can’t really complain about my performance.”
Great Britain’s latest Olympic cycling medalist, Amitstead, said that after her performance on Sunday when she was beaten in the sprint by Marianne Vos of the Netherlands, she would just go out and enjoy tomorrow’s race.
“I’m looking forward to riding an event without any pressure,” she explained. “Time trials aren’t really my forte but it is something I will probably look to work on in the future. It will be good to make Emma feel like she can win the gold.”
Start time Bib no. Name (Country) 14:15:00 37 Mouhcine Lahsaini (Morocco) 14:16:30 36 Tomas Gil Martinez (Venezuela) 14:18:00 35 Alireza Haghi (Iran) 14:19:30 34 Ahmet Akdilek (Turkey) 14:21:00 33 Magno Nazaret (Brazil) 14:22:30 32 Fumiyuki Beppu (Japan) 14:24:00 31 Assan Bazayev (Kazakhstan) 14:25:30 30 David McCann (Ireland) 14:27:00 29 Lars Ytting Bak (Denmark) 14:28:30 28 Michael Albasini (Switzerland) 14:30:00 27 Fabio Duarte (Colombia) 14:31:30 26 Lars Boom (Netherlands) 14:33:00 25 Jack Bauer (New Zealand) 14:34:30 24 Janez Brajkovic (Slovenia) 14:36:00 23 Maciej Bodnar (Poland) 14:37:30 22 Philippe Gilbert (Belgium) 14:39:00 21 Alexandre Vinokourov (Kazakhstan) 14:40:30 20 Ryder Hesjedal (Canada) 14:42:00 19 Jonathan Castroviejo (Spain) 14:43:30 18 Jakob Fuglsang (Denmark) 14:45:00 17 Nelson Oliviera (Portugal) 14:46:30 16 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Norway) 14:48:00 15 Ramunas Navardauskas (Lithuania) 14:49:30 14 Denis Menchov (Russia) 14:51:00 13 Lieuwe Westra (Netherlands) 14:52:30 12 Vasil Kiryienka (Belarus) 14:54:00 11 Gustav Larsson (Sweden) 14:55:30 10 Michael Rogers (Australia) 14:57:00 9 Bert Grabsch (Germany) 14:58:30 8 Sylvain Chavanel (France) 15:00:00 7 Chris Froome (Great Britain) 15:01:30 6 Marco Pinotti (Italy) 15:03:00 5 Luis Leon Sanchez (Spain) 15:04:30 4 Taylor Phinney (USA) 15:06:00 3 Tony Martin (Germany) 15:07:30 2 Bradley Wiggins (Great Britain) 15:09:00 1 Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland) Start time Bib no. Name (Country) 12:30:00 24 Clemilda Fernandes (Brazil) 12:31:30 23 Pia Sundstedt (Finland) 12:33:00 22 Liesbet De Vocht (Belgium) 12:34:30 21 Ashleigh Moolman (RSA) 12:36:00 20 Audrey Cordon (France) 12:37:30 19 Tatiana Antoshina (Russia) 12:39:00 18 Elena Tchalykh (Azerbaijan) 12:40:30 17 Tatiana Guderzo (Italy) 12:42:00 16 Denise Ramsden (Canada) 12:43:30 15 Olga Zabelinskaya (Russia) 12:45:00 14 Emilia Fahlin (Sweden) 12:46:30 13 Trixi Worrack (Germany) 12:48:00 12 Noemi Cantele (Italy) 12:49:30 11 Shara Gillow (Australia) 12:51:00 10 Ellen Van Dijk (Netherlands) 12:52:30 9 Lizzie Armitstead (Great Britain) 12:54:00 8 Emma Johansson (Sweden) 12:55:30 7 Amber Neben (USA) 12:57:00 6 Emma Pooley (Great Britain) 12:58:30 5 Clara Hughes (Canada) 13:00:00 4 Linda Villumsen (New Zealand) 13:01:30 3 Marianne Vos (Netherlands) 13:03:00 2 Judith Arndt (Germany) 13:04:30 1 Kristin Armstrong (USA)
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.