Bradley Wiggins has released his blood values from the Tour de France to Cycling Weekly.



The Garmin rider promised during the event that he would make his records public, in order to quash speculation about his stunning performance at the Tour, where he was fourth overall. He also included data from the first half of 2009, and the first half of 2008.

The graphs show the “Off Score”, which is calculated from the relationship between haemoglobin levels and the percentage of reticulocytes (immature blood cells). A maximum off score of 134 is permitted – Wiggins recorded well below that, and his values dipped throughout the two Grand Tours he rode, which is typical.



We understand that haematocrit levels are no longer used as a primary indicator of blood manipulation – although readings are taken, the test is no longer taken immediately, and it has been shown that storage and transit can alter the figure.

“Brad is an exceptionally talented athlete and it was great to see him do so well in the Tour de France. He’s always been an outspoken advocate of clean cycling. He requested that we release his results after the Tour and his decision makes me and the entire team proud,” said Jonathan Vaughters, CEO of Slipstream Sports.  

The Garmin team also released the following explanation of the figures:

Blood profiles for Bradley Wiggins (Feb 16, 2008 to July 25, 2009)

Data supplied by Garmin-Slipstream team

Two variables are shown – the “Haemoglobin” (red squares), which is the concentration of oxygen carrying protein in red blood cells, and the “Off Score” (blue diamonds), which is a variable calculated from the haemoglobin concentration and the percentage of reticulocytes or immature red blood cells (Off Score = Hg – (60 x Square Root of Reticulocytes)).



The Off Score, which takes into account the relationship between haemoglobin and reticulocyte concentration is currently used as the reference point for assessing an athlete’s blood profile. Since reticulocytes tend to decrease when haemoglobin is artificially high, the combination of a high haemoglobin and a low reticulocyte raises the Off Score. The upper limit for the Off Score is 134 (indicated by the blue line).



Averages and standard deviations for haemoglobin, reticulocytes and off score were 14.93 +/- 0.8 g/dl, 1.00 +/- 0.16% and 89.4 +/- 9.4 respectively. All of these values are well below the cut off limit, exceeding four times the standard deviation below the upper limit for the Off Score average. Most importantly, the trend during the 2009 Giro d’Italia and the 2009 Tour de France was downward, indicating a drop in blood parameters over the course of each race.

 Bradley Wiggins blood profile 2008

Bradley Wiggins blood profile pro-TdF 2009

Bradley Wiggins blood profile TdF 2009

 

  • Liam Gaff

    In the 2009 Tour data, his blood values jump up again between the stages at Limoges and Sion… In fact, they’re higher than the start of the race in Monaco. Some would say that this is clear indication of a blood transfusion before the Alps. I’m not saying that this is the case, but why hasn’t this been raised?

  • Adrian L Wright

    Podium, Chapeau and a golf clap to Jonathan Da Silva. 100% in agreement.

  • Tony Kemp

    I agree it would be interesting to see some blood results that raise questions – how about an article explaining the science for the layman/woman?

  • Jonathan da Silva

    Alberto, Lance, Andy and Franck, Andreas and Vincenzo are how likely to follow suit? 0% chance?

    Chances of them ever competing year round? 0%?

    As great as it was to cheer Bradley Wiggins I was left to wonder if he might actually have been the best rider in the race rather than celebrate his great 4th.

  • Maurice Carroll

    With all the hype. speculation and just general misinformation, why doesn’t the UCI publish all riders blood levels for the past 5 seasons and then as new figures become available update the riders references, especially those of out of competition tests. This would have a twofold benefit: 1. It would illilminate all speculation from fans and journalists alike as well as other teams. 2. It would reduce the ‘risk’ of “I only proved positive because the blood sample had been tampered with”. Blood is not a stable item and the adhoc way WADA conducts the test’s cannot be taken as fool proof, especially the early morning ‘raids’ on riders. Why conduct tests on all those who have finished ‘in the points’ at the end of each stage? This could be carried out under the watchful eye of Doctors and WADA and it would posibly illiminate the ‘Russian Roulette’ mentality of some riders, who think “I was tested this morning so I can take XYZ and win on this stage and I won’t be tested”.

  • Ralph C

    I’m a cynical medic. It’s great to see these numbers. I really wanted BW to be clean; now I know he is.

  • Mike

    Full marks to Bradley for setting a standard which other pro riders should now be obliged to meet. Lets hope he was not cheated out of a podium placing, particularly given the fabulous ride he did. Well done Brad, you’re a credit to cycling and to the nation.

  • Ashley Stark

    The science is a tad complex. Just as a comparison, it would be interesting to see a graph indicative of suspicious looking blood values. Would be good to see the entire TDF top 10 following suit, but somehow I doubt if that will happen, A shame, because it would really help the sport in its efforts to regain integrity.

  • peter wallwork

    rather than bracing myself I am looking forward to it so that Brad can take his place on the virtual podium. there might be three clean riders on the podium, stranger things have happened, just not in the last twenty years

  • J Humphries

    I can’t pretend to really understand the science, but well done Bradley for publishing these values. It shows the world that a clean athlete can compete if there is a level playing field. I hope that others follow suit!

  • marc cox

    Never had any doubt about Bradley or even Mark Cavendish. good on Brad for taking such a bold step. If only every other pro would follow suit, particularly the top finishers of this years Tour. After all, they have nothing to hide do they ?

  • Martin S

    sad that he should come under suspicion but good for him that he published his values ahead of any authority requirement. now that the best tour in ages is over, i’m bracing myself for the inevitable bad news stories about various riders’ test results. let’s hope things are finally getting better