Bradley Wiggins refused to be drawn into discussions about Sky’s Tour de France team. Instead of talking about its decision to back Chris Froome, he wanted to focus on the Giro d’Italia.
“I didn’t read it,” Wiggins responded to a question about Sky’s press release last week that named Froome as Tour captain.
“I’ll just focus on this race here and now really. I got asked before about this and I’m sure I’ll get asked about it after the Giro, but my mind’s just here at the Giro.”
Wiggins met with about 10 journalists in Treviso on the Giro d’Italia’s first rest day. The Italian Grand Tour races up its first high-mountains tomorrow and finishes up the Altopiano del Montasio.
He sits fourth overall and trails leader Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) by 1-16 minutes.
He and the team rode and visited their bike sponsor Pinarello today. However, journalists wanted to know about the French Grand Tour.
The team issued a press release one week ago to clarify comments coming from a pre-Giro press conference in London.
“It is crucial there is clarity of purpose and for that reason we will go to the Tour with one leader,” Sky team principal, David Brailsford said. “Taking that into consideration and given Chris’s step up in performances this year, our plan… is to have him lead the Tour de France team.”
In London, Wiggins said: “The Tour de France is my focus; it’s just that I’m doing the Giro before.” It prompted Froome to e-mail a response to the press about his right to lead the team.
Wiggins steered clear of the storm in Treviso.
“I’m just concentrated on [the Giro],” Wiggins continued.
“[Team Sky’s statement] says what it says; it’s the same as it was in January when we commented in all the interviews. The difference is that different people decided to use different pieces of what I said, but if you actually marry up what I said in the room at the time two weeks ago, it’s exactly the same to what I said in January, but the message was … reported in different ways.”
Despite attempts, he would not comment further. Asked if he would race for the double if he won the Giro, he just shook his head and laughed.