Bradley Wiggins

  • DOB28 Apr 1980
  • Age34
  • Height 1.90m
  • Weight69kg
  • NationalityBritish
  • Birth PlaceGhent, Belgium

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Paris - Nice

Wiggins bags third in France

Martin takes 2011 title after second Voeckler win

By Nick Howes   Last updated: 17th March 2011

Bradley Wiggins wrapped up his third place at Paris-Nice by finishing the final stage in the yellow jersey group after Thomas Voeckler had secured his second win of the tour.

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Wiggins was able to match race leader Tony Martin blow for blow on the hilly 124km loop around Nice and crossed the line in an elite group containing many of the top contenders, one minute and 22 seconds down on the victorious Voeckler (Europcar).

That result ensured Wiggins ended the race 41 seconds back on Martin (HTC-Highroad), and five seconds adrift of the second-placed Andreas Klöden (RadioShack).

Wind and rain had battered the riders again on the eighth day of action, but Voeckler must have been feeling fresh as he instigated the main breakaway move which saw 11 riders go clear on the first of five categorised ascents.

With HTC-Highroad, Euskaltel and Team Sky monitoring the situation closely, the leaders' advantage was never allowed to grow much over three minutes, and only six riders had survived out front by the time they crested the first category climb of La Turbie.

With the pace slowing on the Col d'Eze, Voeckler attacked again with Diego Ulissi (Lampre), and quickly shed his accomplice on the fast descent into the destination town before pressing on for his hard-fought solo success.

Behind, Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel) made a last-ditch bid to deny Wiggins a place on the podium, but it ultimately proved fruitless as the Spaniard finished just 16 seconds ahead of the Londoner in fourth place behind Ulissi and Julien El Fares (Cofidis).

Fine team display

Looking back on the race, sports director Sean Yates was full of praise for the way his team had performed, and singled out Wiggins for special attention.

He said: "The team was fantastic and rode magnificently from the off again today. For Bradley to get third place in a race like this takes a great effort, and the fact that we also ended up second in the team classification shows the strength in depth that we had here.

"The weather obviously didn't help matters today, but of the 21 guys that were left in the yellow jersey group at the end, we had four of them.

"It's been a fantastic eight days - we've come away with a stage win, a podium finish, and that's a big improvement in comparison to where we were at last season. Hopefully now, we can continue go in the right direction.

"As for Bradley, he isn't solely concentrating on the Tour de France this year, and races like this are the ones which he performs best at.

"Too much pressure comes with putting all your eggs in one basket and we're expecting him to spread his efforts in more races this year. He can be proud of his performance here and that will give him confidence for the races to come."

User comments (19)

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Ems Y says...

Reading a few of these comments... I'd say some people have no idea how hard

Posted 22:51 18th March 2011

Richard Northin says...

A very good race for Bradley and the team. I think concentrating solely on the Tour de France would be the wrong thing to do. It's good to see the effort and focus being put into other events that are fantastic races in there own right. A talented rider should show his abilities in more than one grand tour a year. In my view there have only ever been a small handful of riders who have been able to concentrate soley on the Tour de France.

Posted 22:17 15th March 2011

Paul Boultwood says...

Yes, a good result but did we see a Team Sky rider attack - even just once? We did not. Is that the team's tactics - follow the rest? That is not the way to put your stamp on the sport.

Posted 14:26 15th March 2011

Mat Barker says...

Certainly an improvement but clearly the race suited the time trial specialists. The TDF with more hills and less TT mileage will not suit so well so let's not get carried away. I see BW possibly in the top 15, but not a serious contender. Does Tem Sky have a serious GC contender?

Posted 09:42 15th March 2011

Ian Angus says...

Well Done Sky and Wiggo. Great effort. It's just a shame the weather was so bad on the last day as I'd have loved sky to attack for a better position. As it was I think the tatics were right to consolidate 3rd.

Posted 11:30 14th March 2011

Lenny Bernstein says...

Well done Wiggo, and to the rest of the team. It was great to see some great performances. Greg Henderson's win was great, Rigoberto's 3rd was superb and I can't wait to see him attack more often in the mountains. Geraint was phenomenal as a lead out man and then as a climbing domestique on that last stage. Mick Rogers was solid, which bodes as well as his form improves. Let's hope Sky build on this and go on to win a couple of tours this year...

Posted 10:58 14th March 2011

Marc Deighton says...

I think criticism of Brad and the sky team are totally unfair. Thought the road a great race over the whole week. Remember this is only their second season and already I can see great improvments from last year. Good luck in the classic.

Posted 10:43 14th March 2011

Roger Sands says...

Fantastic riding by Brad and the rest of the team.In answer to Maxwell's comments,I've ridden the roads around Eze a fair bit and the surface is not great,they have really tight bends and are pretty tricky in the dry and horrible in the wet.The chances of attacking, and putting 40 seconds into the leaders-and not coming off on in those conditions- are not good.I was just praying no one came off badly in the last descent from Eze to Nice.Early season 3rd in a hard Paris Nice is a brilliant result for Brad and the team.The tactics were spot on in the conditions in my view.

Posted 09:55 14th March 2011

Mark Amos says...

Great result Wiggo!

Posted 09:16 14th March 2011

Michael Heaton says...

Good ride guys - much better start to the season - now for the classics.

Posted 04:07 14th March 2011

John Francis says...

Good early season result but can we have more attacking riding as the season progresses.

Posted 21:51 13th March 2011

Paul Robertson says...

Great to see Wiggo on the podium. I feel a better year for the team in 2011 however believed there could have been more of a shot at putting Bradley in the Yellow Jersey - seemed that the team were happy for a second or third Great observation from Annabelle on the pic - It made me larf.

Posted 21:41 13th March 2011

Eileen Orrell says...

Whoopee Team Sky riders and staff. Congratulations on podium place in Paris Nice. Brad we are proud of you and the Boys here at Wigan Station, long may you all continue to race like you do.

Posted 21:37 13th March 2011

Matt Hodges says...

Yet another great Result for Team Sky this season, and Bradley's best race by far for them, another awesome display by Gee shame about Greg's illness...

Posted 21:31 13th March 2011

Arronski Shark says...

Go Sky .. Wicked ride by the team, good start to the season ...i'm expecting big things this year !

Posted 19:57 13th March 2011

Maxwell Savege says...

I'm sorry guys, but I had problems understanding your tactics yesterday and especially today. Tony Martin had very few team mates in the final stages, yet Sky rode as if he was their leader. I saw five Sky riders in the group, yet the only one we saw was Geraint Thomas, and he rode to bring the break back. With the numerical advantage Sky had, a bit more ambition and attack could have been expected. I can only assume that everybody was tired and 3rd place was considered a good result.

Posted 18:06 13th March 2011

Anabelle Panda says...

Just look at the length of Wiggins' right arm. Like Mr Tickle. Great result btw

Posted 17:29 13th March 2011

Simon Plackett says...

Absolutely superb all round performance from the team, continuing the strong start to the season, keep it up guys!!!

Posted 17:05 13th March 2011

Peter Newman says...

Well done Bradley, that makes good hopes for the Tour de France in summer, Peter Newman

Posted 16:02 13th March 2011

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