Froome and wiggo divide the spoils of 2013

If they win – never mind 2012 look what 2013 looks to focus on

Dave Brailsford has publicly confirmed that Chris Froome will spearhead Team Sky’s challenge in the Tour de France next summer, while this year’s winner Bradley Wiggins will focus on adding the overall win in the Giro d’Italia to his growing palmarès.

The Team Sky principal was speaking last night at Action Medical Research’s Champions of Cycle Sport dinner at London’s Hurlingham Club and also confirmed that the British ProTeam would be looking to get new signing Jonathan Tiernan-Locke into some big races.

Next year’s Tour has a total of 65 kilometres of individual time trials compared to more than 100 kilometres in this year’s edition, one of those two stages against the clock coming during a tough final week in the Alps that arguably suits Froome’ climbing abilities more than it does those of Wiggins.

At the presentation of the 2013 Tour in Paris last month, Brailsford hinted that Froome was likely to be its main hope in the race, and that has now been confirmed by his comments yesterday evening in a question and answer session with Sky TV presenter Dermot Murnaghan.

A supposed intra-team rivalry between Froome and Wiggins, who had finished second and third respectively in last season’s Vuelta, was one of the more compelling sub-plots of this summer’s Tour de France.

The Tour finished in Paris with not only the first British winner of the 109-year-old race in Wiggins, but also a British one-two as Froome secured the runners-up spot.

A couple of incidents during the race – Froome apparently attacking Wiggins on Stage 11 and a discussion between the pair towards the end of Stage 17 once they were left alone in pursuit of stage winner Alejandro Valverde – gave rise to a wave of speculation that all was not well between Team Sky’s two stars.

Froome has insisted that he was simply looking to make up time on GC rivals, having lost more than a minute to a puncture in the first road stage of the race, and Sky’s official line has always been that Wiggins was the designated rider this year and that if a future Tour had a course better suited to Froome’s talents, he would get its full support.

Next year’s Giro, meanwhile – a race in which Wiggins has previously worn the maglia rosa, winning the Prologue in Amsterdam with Sky in 2010 – has a long, 55.5 kilometre individual time trial midway through which should suit Olympic champion Wiggins to a T, as well as a mountain time trial of nearly 20 kilometres in the final week.

According to rumours when the route was launched last month, the course is believed to have been designed in part to help entice Wiggins to focus on winning the Giro rather than concentrating on a defence of his Tour title.

Were he to go on and win the Giro, Wiggins would join some exalted names in winning both the French and Italian Grand Tours, five of whom – Jacques Anquetil, Alberto Contador, Felice Gimondi, Bernard Hinault and Eddy Merckx – have also won the Vuelta. Just getting onto the podium would see Wiggins becoming only the 14th cyclist to have done so in all three Grand Tours.

Finishing the race in the maglia rosa when it ends in Brescia would therefore pretty much seal Wiggins’ place as a legend of the sport, something British Cycling and Team Sky coach Shane Sutton said earlier this week that the 32-year-old had set as a goal.

Others may have won more on the road, but Wiggins also has six rainbow jerseys and three Olympic golds on the track, plus that time trial gold in London. Admittedly, until 1996, pros couldn’t take part in the Olympics, but it’s a pretty impressive haul nonetheless.

As for Tiernan-Locke, the 27-year-old Tour of Britain champion, signed from Endura Racing on a two-year contract, told Torbay area newspaper the Herald Express this week that while his racing calendar for next year hadn’t been decided yet, “There’s a possibility I may ride the Vuelta.”

He added: “I want to get a Grand Tour in my legs, to see how I would respond to it. It changes you as a rider, and you learn a lot about yourself.”

Brailsford said last night that he would be looking to get his new rider into some big races – a solid performance in this year’s world championships has prompted thoughts that he might target the Ardennes Classics.

The word last night though is that Sky want Tiernan-Locke to shed around 9 kilos to get into ideal shape for next season – and we also learnt that his original nickname wasn’t JTL, down in Devon he was given the monicker J-Lo which he joked with Murnaghan was due to his big butt. That would be the first thing to go if he adopts the Twiggo diet, we reckon.

Ritual bike clean

Thoughts on a ritual

Yes we can do (almost) anything by bike!!!

Dark, cold and a bike that needs to be cleaned and looked after… It’s also part of the total bike experience! Sometimes I find it very difficult to get started, but often it’s very relaxing. Some kind of meditation?

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Birthday Bike Books

Another of my birthday presents – had 3 bike books along with my bike top.

First book / journal is
BIKE WATCHING (an explorers journey)

Inspired by birdwatching logs and the very British tradition of trainspotting, this journal is designed to champion a new type of activity: bike watching.

The Bike Watching journal gives users room to record and sketch all kinds of strange, exciting and surprising wheeled events.

David Sparshott’s inspiring illustrations celebrate bike culture in all its diverse and colourful glory, from stylish accessories and beautiful components to quirky gatherings and classic races.

Slingshot looking sweet

I love my 2009 Lenten lunacy sling shot as well as my custom dc boards 4-play …. But this board from slingshot – the dialer – looks like it has finally caught up with the quad fin design that people have been customising for ages ….. Pretty fishy too which looks like it would be a lot of fun and long at that rocker pretty quick to get going too.

Key highlights:

  • Quad fins – Smooth in the turns and chop
  • WVS Bamboo Construction – Light weight, increased flex and softer feel
  • Light Wind performance
  • Can be used for surf or kite making it great for travelling
  • Mini Tuttle fin box / fins – for added durability day to day
  • Duraglide base: added durability
  • Slingshot Legendary Construction: bomber quality

Package Includes:

  • Slingshot Dialer deck
  • 2 x 4.62” asymmetrical MT – mini tuttle front surf fins
  • 2 x 4.50” asymmetrical MT – mini tuttle rear surf fins
  • Pre-installed rear traction surf pad
  • 2 x Surf Straps

Slingshot Dialer Sizes:

Sizes: 5’11” x 20.5″ x 2.50″ Thickness

Resorting to stereotypes

I arrive home after a day staring at the film in the edit to hear ‘you have to fix my bike it has a puncture again’

‘I will show you how to fix it….’ I suggested …. But got ‘what makes you think I am interested this is your department…’

Her lovely titanium brompton is a beaut but not on a night like this. It is generally folded and I don’t notice it but now. 1. Punctured
2. Filthy
3. Rusty chain

So I fix the puncture and discover a chunk of glass in the light but pretty crappy schwalbe tyres (stelvio light) and then another and another and another. Fish them all out with my global chef knife then a drop of superglue into each crater sized hole.


Tube repaired then chain cleaned and degreased. I sit back and admire the lovely blue brooks saddle I bought her two months ago and wish secretly that the blue bike was mine.