August 13, 2016 10:16:38 am
Bradley Wiggins shrugged off becoming Britain’s most decorated Olympian in typically low-key fashion on Friday, saying it was “just something to tell the kids about” after winning gold in track cycling’s team pursuit.
Britain set a new world record as they beat Australia in the Rio de Janeiro Olympic velodrome, taking Wiggins’ medal haul to eight, including five golds.
“I don’t really think about that to be honest,” Wiggins told reporters. “It’s just something to tell the kids about when they’re older.”
Wiggins won his first medal, a team pursuit bronze, at the Sydney Olympics in 2000.
“I’d come away with a bronze medal there and I thought well that’s it, if I have to go to the job center on Monday morning and get a job I can always say I’ve got this Olympic bronze.”
But in fact it was just the start.
Wiggins went on to become both Britain’s first Tour de France winner and win more Olympic medals than any other Briton, combining a track and road racing career in a way few have been able to master.
But it was not always easy.
In 2014, when Wiggins won silver in the team pursuit at the Commonwealth Games many questioned whether gold in Rio was a step too far for the knighted sportsman.
“I gave up the road, gave up the big salary and came in and was just a number again and had to start from the bottom again,” Wiggins said.
But one final Olympic gold was enough to focus the mind.
“I wanted to go out with this, I wanted it to end like this and not some crappy little race in the north of France, Paris- Tour in the rain,” referring to a road race which starts outside Paris.
Wiggins said his last race would be the Tour of Britain.
“It’ll be a nice end to my career, back where I was born and it all started,” he said.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.