Wiggins gives Sky lift-off

Landmark win on Team Sky's Grand Tour debut

By Jonathan Turner   Last updated: 10th May 2010

Bradley Wiggins gave Team Sky the perfect start to the Giro d'Italia by winning the opening time trial in Amsterdam.

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"If you want to win it, you've got to commit 100 per cent."

Bradley Wiggins

The three-time Olympic champion had been one of the favourites for the 8.4km event and he delivered in stunning style to give Team Sky a Grand Tour stage victory at their very first attempt.

Resplendent in the British time-trial champion's white jersey with red and blue bands, Wiggins was a second ahead at the intermediate time check and stopped the clock in 10 minutes and 18 seconds, two seconds clear of his rivals.

BMC Racing pair Brent Bookwalter and world road race champion Cadel Evans filled second and third but the day belonged to Wiggins, with his victory meaning he becomes only the second Briton to wear the race leader's jersey, the maglia rosa.

On a landmark day for Team Sky there was also a superb ride from sprinter Greg Henderson who finished fifth, five seconds behind, while Dario Cioni underlined his recent good form by coming home in 15th place.

Steve Cummings was 69th, Michael Barry 70th, Mathew Hayman 94th, Chris Sutton 101st, Morris Possoni 111th and Chris Froome, working his way back to full fitness after a recent chest infection, was 138th.

Tunnel vision

Wiggins was a study in concentration at the start and he said afterwards: "I was in my own world - that's how I always do these things.

"I was oblivious to anyone else and just did my own race. It was hard but I just went for it, especially in the corners. If you want to win it, you've got to commit 100 per cent, like a sprinter when they go for a sprint.

"For me it's beautiful to be wearing the pink jersey. It's iconic and one of the most special jerseys. To wear it means a lot to me and is a big honour."

Team principal Dave Brailsford was quick to hail Wiggins and the team as a whole, telling us: "Bradley absolutely committed 100% and technically he rode it very, very well. I think it was in the corners where he really made the difference and came out a deserved winner.

"It's an absolutely brilliant day for us and is testimony to the work that the backroom staff do. It's all the setting up, the attention to detail, the planning - all of that which is hard to do but which all pays off if you take the time to do it properly."

Sports director Sean Yates was equally delighted by the team's performance, and thought Wiggins lived up to his reputation superbly.

He said: "You couldn't ask for a better start. This is the first stage of Team Sky's first-ever Grand Tour and everything ran super-smoothly.

"Everybody knows Bradley is one of the world's best time triallers, so there was a lot of pressure on his shoulders at the start of the day, but he dealt with it all superbly and really came up with the goods."