Wiggins targets Giro and Tour de France double
LONDON, Dec 17 (Reuters) – Bradley Wiggins has targeted winning the Giro d’Italia and defending his Tour de France crown back to back next year.
Britain’s first Tour de France winner was named BBC Sports Personality of the Year on Sunday and immediately set his sights on emulating an incredible 12 months which also saw him romp to gold in the time trial at the London Olympics.
“I’ve always wanted to win a second Tour,” Wiggins was quoted as saying in the Guardian on Monday.
“I’m the defending champion. I want to try and win the Giro d’Italia and win the Tour de France behind it. People say it can’t be done, winning two Tours. So let’s have a go at it.”
Very few riders have managed to win both the Giro and the Tour de France in the same year with the late Marco Pantani last achieving the feat in 1998.
Before him Spanish great Miguel Indurain managed the double in 1992 and 1993.
Next year’s Giro starts in Naples on May 4 and will cover 3,405km until the finish on May 26 while the Tour de France starts its 100th edition on June 29.
Wiggins’ Sky team mate Chris Froome, runner-up last year, is being tipped to win next year’s Tour as he is more suited to the extra mountain stages, but team boss Dave Brailsford did not rule out Wiggins going for victory in both.
“I was thrilled that (Wiggins has) got his appetite back. He’s hungry and he wants it again,” Brailsford told the BBC after being named Coach of the Year on Sunday.
“It’s a problem I relish and we’ll assess it as we get closer.
“Chris is focusing on the Tour and if Bradley does ride the Giro, we’ll have to see how he comes out of that, and assess the situation as you get close to the actual event,” he added.
“At the end of the day, the legs will do the talking.”