Sir Bradley Wiggins is involved in a legal argument with his former management company over his earnings from his contract with Team Sky and his 2012 Tour de France victory.
The MTC agency is suing Sir Bradley in the High Court for commission on his deal with Team Sky, which is reported to have been worth £4 million plus a £1 million bonus in the event of him winning the 2012 Tour de France.
MTC billed Sir Bradley for £741,000 commission on that deal, and the company claims he refused to pay. He then sacked MTC as his representatives and issued a counter-claim, accusing the company of trying to charge fees it was not entitled to and having a disorganised accounting system.
According to Martin Delgado in the Daily Mail, MTC claims it agreed to act as his sole agent in exchange for 20 per cent of his gross income from TV appearances and sponsorship deals.
But Sir Bradley says that the company was entitled to commission only on contracts it negotiated for him, and that for his first four years with the firm, some deals were arranged by his wife Catherine and friends.
Sir Bradley signed up with MTC after the Beijing Olympics in 2008. He asked MTC managing director Jonathan Marks to act for him over his move to Team Sky, it is claimed, and later asked Marks to renegotiate his deal with the team.
Team Sky boss Sir Dave Brailsford allegedly told Mr Marks in a phone call that Sir Bradley had been offered up to £4 million a year, plus a £1 million bonus, if he won the 2012 Tour de France.
MTC therefore invoiced for almost three-quarters of a million.
At the beginning of last year, Sir Bradley's lawyers wrote to MTC, suspending its authority to act for him and his charitable foundation. The agency says this amounted to a repudiation of their agreement and entitled them to sue for damages.
Wiggins is now represented by Simon Fuller’s XIX Entertainment.
A spokesman for XIX Entertainment said last night: “Sir Bradley is no longer represented by MTC. He strenuously denies that it was he who breached the terms of any contract and as this is subject to legal proceeding he will not be commenting further.”
MTC declined to comment to the Mail.
Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.
Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.
Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.
The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.