Bradley Wiggins will end his professional road career at the end of next season and then focus on a track berth at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games according to an article published in The Times.

Cycling Weekly speculated in June the reigning Olympic time-trial champion may follow such a path with younger Sky teammates Chris Froome, who won the Tour last month, as well as Richie Porte having emerged as Grand Tour general classification leaders within the British outfit. 

“I’m going to continue to the next Olympics and try for a fifth gold on the track. That’s the plan,” Wiggins told the daily. “Having lost weight and muscle the last few years, I wouldn’t be able to walk back into that team pursuit squad, so I’m not taking it for granted, but I am working towards that. It would be nice to finish the career with another Olympic gold.”

The 33-year-old plans to see out his current contract with Sky, which expires at the end of next season, before shifting his focus fully to the Great Britain track squad.

Wiggins has endured a difficult year abandoning the Giro d’Italia in May, where he had overall ambitions but admitted to dithering after a second place finish to Alex Dowsett (Movistar) in the stage eight time trial where Vincenzo Nibali captured, and did not relinquish, the pink jersey.

“I don’t mind admitting that Chris is probably a better Grand Tour rider than me,” he said. “He is a much better climber, he can time-trial well. He has age on his side, he has no kids. That’s fine.

“If Chris wants to, he could potentially win five Tours now. So if I want to win another Tour, I’d probably have to leave the team…I love this team. This is my home. I’m not going to go, ‘I want to be the leader still, so I’m off.’ ”

Wiggins is now focused on a gold medal campaign at the approaching time-trial world championships in Italy and is set to support compatriot Froome in the road race.

Twitter: @CyclingWeekly

  • Ken Evans

    “….it would probably take big bucks from another team to get him as main gc rider.” —-They would need a big budget to afford his wages. Sky seem to have bet on Froome, BUT Wiggins beat him in 2012, at the Tour, AND at the Olympics. Some riders are very driven and focused (such as Armstrong), often Brad just doesn’t seem to care. After winning golds medals, and breaking world records in 2008, he went off to the pub to get drunk ! After winning the Tour De France, he says he isn’t going to race anymore stage races ! Come on Brad get your act together ! If you aren’t happy at Sky, then create a team where you are happy ! Other riders in the peloton only wish that they could win the Tour CLEAN !

  • adam

    I’m not sure it’s all about the team abandoing him or being able to take up the GC reigns with another team. He always talks about the committment and the costs of doing in relation to his family and lifestyle. Maybe he’s had enough of the sacrifice – or, in Wiggins style, enough of it for now.

    I really like Wiggins and his non-media friendly approach. He seems human and fallable. He says things that amuse people or just to annoy people sometimes. Like Cav, he has a personality and people relate to that I think. So he can be grumpy and arrogant too, but surely we all have our moments of that? (We just don’t have to face a TV crew everytime we say something a little out of left field).

    Good luck to him and whatever he does – or doesn’t do. If he retires tomorrow, he still has had an amazing career.

  • Richard S

    I agree with Borderfox that Wiggins at the Tour of Poland and Eneco Tour has looked disinterested, either due to a bad attitude or sulking. Maybe Froome usurping him has led to him feeling like Sky aren’t interested anymore. Who knows.

  • gg/gg

    I agree @borderfox these other riders brought the sport to the tabloids etc; now “Trotty” and her likes are carrying on where they left off to encourage the younger end.
    Wiggins has only the road TT to aim at in the next Olympics as the Individual Pursuit has been (sadly) dropped.

  • bigsambw

    depending on route I think wiggo could win another tdf or grand tour, but it would probably take big bucks fom another team to get him as main gc rider. but whatever he does he is a legend in british cycling.

  • borderfox

    it seems to me after watching Brads interview (he looked lost and a shadow of the man he was last year) and then Shane Sutton`s interview later in the year, that Brad has once again gone off the rails, post Athens, Beijing, Tour de France 2009 and now the same post 2012 season. In Shane Sutton`s words he (Brad) needs someone who will tell him when he`s taking the P**s living the rock n roll life style and not a team around him saying your hitting the figures well done Brad.
    Whilst it must be hard living out of a suitcase for most of the year and like a monk for the rest this is the careerer path in which Brad and many others have chosen to take all be it a very short one, none of them will be doing this into their 60`s so a bit of suffering along the way isn’t all that bad.
    In response to gg/gg comment Wiggins took cycling into the main stream, he is only a very small link in the chain (pardon the pun) in the creation of this, Boardman, Hoy, Pendleton, etc, etc.
    Also if he was struggling to descend in the Giro due to a crash were was Steve Peters to take the chimp off his shoulder, so much for Sky`s marginal gains, or was Brad all ready dumped by Sky and now its a case of seeing out the contract as seemed to be the case in the Tour of Poland, ride round at the back n hope to win the TT.

  • Richard S

    A shame really. Compared to road cycling track cycling is small time. For someone like Wiggins such a small pond is a waste of a big talent. We won’t see him again until he is interviewed by Hazel Irvine after winning gold in Rio.

  • Sue Bates

    Bradley Wiggins is what British cycling is all about and good luck to him in whatever he chooses to do. I, for one, will miss him in the road races – the Tour wasn’t the same this year without him, despite celebrating a British winner. I am also a fan of the track and look forward to seeing Brad again in that setting – very exciting.

  • gg/gg

    Despite your arrogance (which one needs in sport) I have followed your races and realise that without your performances and personality cycling in Britain would still be a minority, unwanted sport. Good luck with your attempt to regain your track prowess; but there are younger riders snapping at your heels.