It’s easy to get people’s names confused – we’ve been guilty of it ourselves at road.cc at times – but Sky journalist Adam Boulton has had his leg pulled on social media this week after mistakenly referring to former US soldier Chelsea Manning as Bradley Wiggins during a live broadcast.
The gaffe is down to the fact that the Manning, a trangender woman, went by her birth name of Bradley until 2013.
That year, she was sentenced to 35 years in prison for espionage after giving information to Wikileaks, and said the day after she was jailed that she wanted to be known as Chelsea and to undergo hormone replacement therapy.
Earlier this week, in one of his final acts as President of the United States, Barack Obama commuted her sentence meaning that Manning, who has been held in an all-male prison and has twice attempted suicide, will be released in May.
It was in a report on the commutation of her sentence that Boulton, Sky’s most senior political journalist, confused her name with that of Wiggins, winner of the 2012 Tour de France with Team Sky and Great Britain's most decorated ever Olympian, but who has been dogged by controversy in recent months over his use of medicines to treat his asthma and allergies.
More Bradley Wiggins revelations from 2009 as seen on Sky News this evening pic.twitter.com/rzGScr8In8
— Matt Moran (@MattMoran33) January 17, 2017
Unsurprisingly, Boulton’s slip of the tongue drew some witty replies on Twitter.
— Gavin (@GavinMatheson) January 18, 2017
— Austin (@ajb1072) January 17, 2017
@MattMoran33 Helping achieving regime change through marginal gains
— bongo beach (@bongobeach33) January 18, 2017
— Jonathan Vaughters (@Vaughters) January 18, 2017
Boulton, in Washington DC for today’s inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States, held his hand up and apologised for his error.
Yes apologies to all concerned. Sentence commuted on Chelsea Manning formerly Bradley Manning nothing to do with cycling. https://t.co/hTTXf3lvR0
— Adam Boulton (@adamboultonSKY) January 17, 2017
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.