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Knee problem prevents Sky star from training to an intensity to needed to make Tour start

Team Sky have officially confirmed that Sir Bradley Wiggins will not be in their team for this year's Tour de France, according to Sky's Team Princiapal, Sir Dave Brailsford a knee problem has prevented Wiggins from training to the intensity required for him to be fit enough for either the Dauphine or the Tour de Suisse - both crucial preparation races for Sky's Tour Squad. I

In a statement released by the team this afternoon Brailsford, Wiggins and the team's doctor, Richard Freeman all explained the situation:

Team Principal Sir Dave Brailsford today confirmed; “With illness, injury and treatment Brad has gone past the point where he can be ready for the Tour. It’s a big loss but, given these circumstances, we won’t consider him for selection.”

“He hasn’t been able to train hard since the Giro and now he needs further rest. Whilst we all know these things happen in sport, it doesn’t take away from the fact that this is a huge disappointment for everyone in the team – and above all for Brad.

‘”It’s incredibly sad to have the reigning champion at Team Sky but not lining up at the Tour. But he’s a champion, a formidable athlete and will come back winning as he has before”

Sir Bradley Wiggins said; “It’s a huge disappointment not to make the Tour.  I desperately wanted be there, for the team and for all the fans along the way - but It’s not going to happen.

“I can’t train the way I need to train and I’m not going to be ready. Once you accept that, it’s almost a relief not having to worry about the injury and the race against time.

“I’ve been through this before, when I broke my collarbone, so I know how it works. I’ll get this sorted, set new goals for this season and focus on those.”

“This team has so many riders in great shape, ready for selection and we set incredible standards for performance which shouldn’t be compromised.  We need to have the best chance to win.”

Team Doctor Richard Freeman, said; “The chest infection that caused his withdrawal from the Giro has responded to treatment and rest. It has completely cleared up.

“However, further medical investigations on the knee injury that we were managing at the Giro showed the condition was more significant than we thought.

“It’s needed intensive treatment and, whilst it will be fully resolved, Bradley now needs to rest completely for five days before a gradual, return to full training over a period of two to three weeks.”

News that Wiggins' Tour particiaption was in doubt was revealed earlier today by The Guardian's William Fotheringham, to whom Brailsford revealed that a problem, thought to be caused by too much play in Wiggins' left pedal had caused inflammation to the riders' left knee which was and was stopping him from training at full intensity.

Every cloud has a silver lining though and the news that Wiggins might not make the Tour solves the looming headache of accommodating both him and designated team leader for the race, Chris Froome, in the same team. Wiggins has made no secret of his desire, if form allows, to defend his title - earlier this year he even floated the idea that Sky might ride this year's Tour with two team leaders a suggestion promptly shot down by Brailsford.

It also has to be said that a number of Sky watchers had been predicting an 'injury' ruling Wiggins out of the Tour following his comments after leaving the Giro that he would now focus on the Tour. That, the theory went, would solve the Wiggins/Froome conundrum and avoid the embarrassment of appearing to show lack of respect for the race by leaving the defending champion at home for the start of the Tour's 100th edition.

Wiggins had returned to training after recovering from the chest infection that forced him out of the Giro d'Italia ahead of stage 13 earlier this month, his teammate Rigoberto Uran, who had been riding in support of the Briton went on to claim second place in the race.

Brailsford said that the knee problem was not related to Wiggin's crash on stage 7 of the race - after which Wiggins was seen holding an icepack to his bruised knee - but that was his right one. Instead the problem is being ascribed to too much play or float in his pedal. Although Team Sky are sponsored by Shimano Wiggins uses Speedplay pedals - which offer a much greater level of float than Shimano. Ironically that extra float is something that particularly attracts riders with knee problems.

Sir Dave's assertion that there may have been too much play in Wiggins' pedal will raise some eyebrows. The amount of float on a Speedplay can be adjusted to suit and most riders will know exactly how much adjustment their pedals require - certainly pros who ride prodigous mileages and as a result are fanatical about the set up of their bikes and their pedals. It seems unlikely that this detail would not have been known to whoever set up Sir Bradley's pedals at the Giro - which according to the Guardian report is when Wiggins started to complain about knee pain, unless of course something has changed inside his knee. In most cases problems with pedal set up is instantly noticeable and indeed painful - pedal problems aren't usually a slow burner general wear and tear however can be.

Sir Bradley has not been named in Team Sky's squad for the Dauphine Libere stage race which starts this Sunday and which he won the last two editions of. The race (along with the Tour de Suisse) is often seen as a warm up for the main Tour contenders often featuring some of the same climbs as the Tour will race over six weeks later.

However, given that he was targeting the Giro it is unlikely that he would have been in Sky's original plans for this race, and even though Wiggins only rode half the Italian grand tour, he also had a chest infection and the after affects of his Giro crashes to recover from before getting in the frame for this race.

Plucked from the obscurity of his London commute back in the mid-Nineties to live in Bath and edit bike mags our man made the jump to the interweb back in 2006 as launch editor of a large cycling website somewhat confusingly named after a piece of navigational equipment. He came up with the idea for road.cc mainly to avoid being told what to do… Oh dear, issues there then. Tony tries to ride his bike every day and if he doesn't he gets grumpy, he likes carbon, but owns steel, and wants titanium. When not on his bike or eating cake Tony spends his time looking for new ways to annoy the road.cc team. He's remarkably good at it.

37 comments

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othello [382 posts] 3 years ago
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Too much play (i.e. float) in the pedal, and he uses Speedplay...

Interesting to see how that plays out.

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nostromo [55 posts] 3 years ago
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This TdF was never suitable for Wiggo. They're going up Alpe d' Huez twice fer chrissakes! So I think Sky has now decided to bite the bullet in as diplomatic a was as possible.

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cat1commuter [1421 posts] 3 years ago
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Strikes me that a Sky TdF team without Wiggins would be a much better team.

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notfastenough [3715 posts] 3 years ago
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Don't see how 'too much float' could do it. The float isn't under spring retention on Speedplay, so the foot just goes where the knee wants it to.

Anyway, regardless:

1. Wiggo is an awesome bike rider.

2. This year's TdF would appear to suit Froome more for the protected rider role. If that has resulted in a spat and the most graceful way of resolving the team leader argument is to feign injury, fair enough.

3. All the cocks knocking him down on twitter should win the odd elite WT race before running their mouths.

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BenMWilliamson [27 posts] 3 years ago
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So if Wiggins isn't riding the Tour, what is the likelihood that he will do a 'Contador'? - in the sense that he will be the only rider to specifically target the Vuelta.

Not the doping stuff...

Seems like the most sensible direction for him to create a successful season of 2013..?

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 3 years ago
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Awwwww what a shame....are we sure it wasn't his dodgy mouth that's seem him a doubt for the tour??

As for the Vuelta, its been pretty much promised to Porte this season. Wiggo had his chance with the Giro. It didn't work out. Move on and wait for next year  19

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Ben Burns [60 posts] 3 years ago
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Vuelta it is then

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Goldfever4 [225 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

Awwwww what a shame....are we sure it wasn't his dodgy mouth that's seem him a doubt for the tour??

As for the Vuelta, its been pretty much promised to Porte this season. Wiggo had his chance with the Giro. It didn't work out. Move on and wait for next year  19

At his age? Fat chance

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bikeandy61 [538 posts] 3 years ago
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Blimey the bloke really does have some haters. I have to admit that I've found him a challenge but come on. To be honest he hasn't really seemed on last year's form all year long. I suspect he's suffering from 2010 syndrome. He's made some crass comments but par for the course there.

He really needs Shame Sutton back in Sky to kick his arse and motivate him again.

Tour of Britain overall and look to 2014 I say.

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notfastenough [3715 posts] 3 years ago
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Goldfever4 wrote:
Gkam84 wrote:

Awwwww what a shame....are we sure it wasn't his dodgy mouth that's seem him a doubt for the tour??

As for the Vuelta, its been pretty much promised to Porte this season. Wiggo had his chance with the Giro. It didn't work out. Move on and wait for next year  19

At his age? Fat chance

Tell that to Cadel.

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doubledex [32 posts] 3 years ago
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Well, of course we can all speculate all we like, doesnt do any good. Let support Froome at the TdF and Wiggins for the Vuelta (where maybe being an underdog might suit him psychologically?). Yes, there are a lot of haters of Wiggins here - shame that.

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sponican [93 posts] 3 years ago
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Too much play eh? I reckon Chris Froome has done a Tonya Harding  3

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crikey [1252 posts] 3 years ago
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I suspect that people who don't like Wiggins have reason to do so, and to dismiss them as 'haters' reveals more about those commenting.
Wiggins has not exactly shone in PR terms; a fairly disreputable exit from Garmin, ill advised comments regarding Armstrong, and the on going silliness with Froome and the Tour.

Being the darling of the new-to-cycling fans because he's British wears thin very quickly...

...and if you live in Chorley, rain really shouldn't be a surprise.

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Super Domestique [1609 posts] 3 years ago
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Officially out according to sky site now http://www.teamsky.com/article/0,27290,17546_8744262,00.html

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 3 years ago
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SD beat me to it. Its official now  36 103 18

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700c [977 posts] 3 years ago
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LMAO Wiggins wouldn't give a f--k about people hiding behind pseudonyms on internet forums slagging him off rather than getting off their arses in their own lives and working hard to achieve something..  3

I paraphrase slightly, but it seems apt!

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crikey [1252 posts] 3 years ago
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"rather than getting off their arses in their own lives and working hard to achieve something.."

Ah, and you'd know this how?

Forgive for being rude, but your fanboy is showing...  3

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davidtcycle [76 posts] 3 years ago
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The tour won't be nearly as interesting without Wiggo  20

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 3 years ago
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700c wrote:

LMAO Wiggins wouldn't give a f--k about people hiding behind pseudonyms on internet forums slagging him off rather than getting off their arses in their own lives and working hard to achieve something..  3

I paraphrase slightly, but it seems apt!

I'm not hiding anywhere. My name and face are WELL out there, put in Gkam84 and you will find most of my life, I would quite happily hand out my address to Wiggo and Team Sky (which I think they have from competitions) for him to come visit and I'd discuss my issues with him in person.

No hiding for me. I just don't like his attitude about many things  26

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Strathlubnaig [113 posts] 3 years ago
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The TdF will be as interesting as the contenders make it, and if Wiggins is not on form and has little racing in his legs prior to the tour start, then that would have been very uninteresting, so best sky sends the folk who are up for it.

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700c [977 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:
700c wrote:

LMAO Wiggins wouldn't give a f--k about people hiding behind pseudonyms on internet forums slagging him off rather than getting off their arses in their own lives and working hard to achieve something..  3

I paraphrase slightly, but it seems apt!

I'm not hiding anywhere. My name and face are WELL out there, put in Gkam84 and you will find most of my life, I would quite happily hand out my address to Wiggo and Team Sky (which I think they have from competitions) for him to come visit and I'd discuss my issues with him in person.

No hiding for me. I just don't like his attitude about many things  26

I started composing my witty  7 retort before I'd seen your follow up post so this certainly wasn't aimed at you, or indeed anyone in particular - just the principle of people slagging him off on the internet.

For those who didn't get the joke, I was more-or-less quoting his own words from his memorable outburst last year, rather than accusing specific people for 'not getting off their arses' etc.

So no offence intended, just being argumentative..

As for the man himself, he is like marmite, I accept that. Personally I like the fact that he is real, fallible and not afraid of being disliked.

Oh, and I own a Sky top!

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WolfieSmith [1327 posts] 3 years ago
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I can't bear The Jam but I love Wiggins attitude on most things. He's no time for idiots and the press - which must be wearing as they form 90% of the people he meets.

Makes a change from the usual sports people too dim or frightened of their sponsors to speak their mind and he's always been very nice to everyone on the local chainy.  4

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MattT53 [146 posts] 3 years ago
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What's with the Wiggo hate? Only reason to like Sky is his no nonsense attitude! Anyone who sticks his finger up at the press and 'draws raffle tickets' on the Champs Elysees is a winner in my book.

As an aside I don't think the too much play is rubbish, at the bike fit I had with Adrian Timmis he immediately removed all the float from my speedplay's once my foot was in the right position saying too much was bad.

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seanboy [23 posts] 3 years ago
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well said!!,I do have a lot of respect for what wiggins has a achieved in the past,but im not a great fan of his,im sure he is a nice man,but he just has no charm or charisma,

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Stumps [3414 posts] 3 years ago
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No cloak and dagger stuff from Sky here. If Wiggins was going to be fit he was going to the TdF as defending champion.

Not even the most ardent Sky / Wiggins detractors can surely stick to their guns about it. Neither Sky nor Wiggins would treat the worlds biggest race with anything but respect.

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sanderville [349 posts] 3 years ago
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A disappointing aspect of this whole thing is how mainstream "sports" reporters still trot out that Wiggins is special because he's the first Brit to win the Tour. At least 80 other people won the Tour before he did. No one outside the UK cares about his nationality.

He's special because he's the only man in history to win Paris-Nice, the Dauphine and the Tour de Romandie in one season. Going on to win the Tour and the Olympic TT added to that, but winning those first three already made him unique. That's why the rest of Europe will be disappointed not to see him in the Tour - because they know enough to appreciate what he did last year.

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 3 years ago
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In the same way that Merckx is special for winning almost everything from 67-74....NO, he's not that good and you don't hear people going on about him all the time.

You are only as good as your last race. Doesn't matter what you did last season or how good you CLAIM to be. You have to SHOW it. In the Giro...he didn't. So until he comes back and does something, he'll get dogs abuse from people.

Look at Schleck, he was a nothing man, then Tour of Cali...he's some sort of hero again....  39

But in the time off. I hope Wiggo sits and watches the TdF and see's interviews from Froome and other contenders and see how they give an interview, they can be humble and admit when someone is better than them. Wiggo has it in his head. He's the best in the world, when in reality, he's far from it  3

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Tjuice [221 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

Wiggo has it in his head. He's the best in the world, when in reality, he's far from it  3

Or maybe he really doesn't have that in his head, and is really insecure, and this is the only way he can cover it up. Perhaps it even helps *him* believe he's got what it takes - and if you ask me, having the conviction is pretty essential for success. You are never going to win any big race if you are convinced other competitors are better than you.

Unless Wiggo 'fesses up, we'll just never know, and we'll be sitting here speculating.

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Sam1 [220 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam, whether it's here or Twitter its non-stop bitching about Wiggins from you. You say the same thing over and over again. You can't stand him - cool, that's your right. But ring the changes every now and again eh? We all get it.  22

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Greebo954 [15 posts] 3 years ago
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Or, he could have a bad knee.

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