Another week and another historic instalment in British bike racing. This year’s Tour de France just keeps getting better. We’ve waited 109 years to win the world’s biggest bike race and now we’ve got two riders capable of taking the honours in Paris on Sunday.
Bradley Wiggins has now worn the yellow jersey longer than any other British rider and his only difficult moment was when Chris Froome ‘accidentally’ attacked at the summit finale of stage 11. That blip was explained away as radio miscommunication but it was ample proof that Froome is the best climber in this year’s race.
Team politics aside, it seems Sky have nothing to fear, the squad have preformed faultlessly every stage. And if Froome is the master of the slopes, there is no doubting that Wiggins will stretch his advantage still further in that long, flat time trial on the penultimate day.
Four British stage wins in a Tour isn’t unusual thanks to the sprinting powers of Mark Cavendish but this year’s total has been achieved with four different riders: Cav, Wiggins, Froome and David Millar. Millar’s was poignant, his first stage success since coming back from a doping suspension six years ago.
He collapsed after the line but once recovered he described himself frankly as ‘an ex-doper’. “I’m quite representative of our sport,” he said. “We are in a great place now and the future is very rosy, but I don’t think we should forget the past.”
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly