Tour de France champion admission follows weekend rumours of illness

Team Sky’s Sir Bradley Wiggins has confirmed that he has been suffering from a chest infection and head cold during the Giro d’Italia. Although it's not known when he contracted the condition, there were rumours over the weekend that he along with other members of the team had been struggling with illness.

Quoted on BBC Sport, Wiggins, who currently lies fourth on GC, 2 minutes 5 seconds down on race leader Vincenzo Nibali of Astana, said: "I'm not feeling very good at the moment, I've had a pretty rough 24 hours.

"I've got a chest infection and a bog-standard head cold," explained the Tour de France champion.

The 33-year-old lost nearly a minute and a half to his rivals after crashing towards the end of Friday’s Stage 7, taking things very easy on a subsequent descent to the finish.

On Saturday, a puncture contributed towards his expected dominance in the time trial failing to materialise, with the stage won by Movistar’s Alex Dowsett.

On Sunday’s Stage 9 to Florence, Wiggins had to fight hard to rejoin the GC group after being distanced on a descent, and yesterday he lost a further 49 seconds to Nibali.

Today’s Stage 11 saw the GC group sit back and eventually let a break go away, which produced the day’s winner, Garmin-Sharp’s Ramunas Navardauskas.

Tomorrow the overall contenders will also keep a low profile with the day expected to end in a bunch sprint, while Friday’s stage is a transitional one, which gives Wiggins further time to recover ahead of the next big GC stage on Saturday.

"Fortunately in these days, these kinds of stages, there's just a bit of fighting and you can get through them and hide a little bit," Wiggins acknowledged.

"But I just want to try and fight through it and hope that a few days' time I'll be all right.

"Most of the team have been sick. It seems to last for three or four days and then you get better."

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.