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Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  Panda on Sat 21 Jul - 16:45



Bradley Wiggins has just won the Trial race in the fastest time, 53 kilometres, (35 miles) in 1 hour and 4 minutes . Chris Froome is second so it will be
first and second on the Podium tomorrow when they ride into the Champs Elysee tomorrow, Leslie Garrett will sing the National Anthem . There was in the end a lot of Brits who travelled to cheer him on . Bradley

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  wjk on Sat 21 Jul - 19:48

Excellent feel good news!!

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  Panda on Sun 22 Jul - 8:08

If fans of Bradley Wiggins are fretting about his reception in Paris should he win the Tour de France on Sunday, they can relax. The French public may have started the race knowing next to nothing about the be-sideburned English cyclist - but the more they have seen over the last three weeks, the more they like.

"The French are discovering a little more about him every day," says Alexandre Roos, who has been following Wiggo on the Tour for L'Equipe.

"They know now that he is articulate. They know he is good at interviews. But above all they know that he has a life outside of cycling - that he likes music and British culture, and that he is very proud of it.

"And the French respond really well to that side of him. I know people who are not at all into cycling, but who are definitely interested in Wiggins the man."

James Startt of Bicycling magazine, reckons the French are still figuring Wiggins out.

"He is a man of contradictions. On the one hand he can be charming and funny and full of knowledge about the Tour de France, which of course the French really love.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote
We like the way he speaks his mind. He can express himself in a way that is shall we say... virile”
End Quote
French cycling fan

"And then at other times he plays this mod monster bad-boy type, which no-one has ever seen before in the world of bicycle racing. So he's a bit of an unknown, but what's certain is that he has character.

"And that, they like. All true champions have character."

People who've watched Wiggins over the last three weeks say the attitude of the French has evolved.

Initially, there was a certain suspicion - nurtured in some sections of the media - because of his reluctance to speak to journalists in French.

Wiggins, 32, spent several years with French cycling teams, so he can - if he wants - speak French fluently.

But delivering laconic and (for the French) unintelligible one-liners did not endear him to viewers.

In later post-race press conferences he mellowed. And that helped bring the French over to his side.


Another criticism was aired in a cutting exchange carried out via the press with the former French rider Richard Virenque.

Virenque was responding to a column Wiggins wrote for the Guardian in which he expressed surprise how in France ex-dopers (like Virenque) could still be hailed as heroes.

Virenque (who is indeed a hero in France) said maybe Wiggins should think about working on his own popularity - for example by attacking a bit more often when he races.

It is indeed a common view in France that Wiggins and Team Sky have provided an efficient but boring masterclass in how to shut down a race.

A time-trialler by background, Wiggins consolidated an early lead in the first contre-la-montre (as the French call time trials) and for the rest of the Tour the strategy has been defend, defend, defend.


"Anglo-Saxon teams like Sky are more organised. They are more pro," says Yves Blanc, editor of Le Cycle magazine.

"Every member has a clear job to do, serving the leader, and there's no room for poetry.

"So, yes we have lost something of the romance of the Tour. For the French the history of the Tour is about people who attack, who fail, who overcome disaster to win in the fog or the rain.

"It's not like that any more - but that's not Wiggins's fault. It's the times we live in."

Continue reading the main story
Tour winners: 1903-2011

How the Tour de France went international

James Startt agrees that "what might be brilliant for Team Sky is not necessarily brilliant for spectators". But on the other hand, he adds, "you have to hand it to Team Sky for dominating the race so effectively".

It's not just Wiggins, he points out.

"Several of his team-mates could be leaders themselves. When you have a world champion - Mark Cavendish - going back and forth with water-bottles, that shows an amazing depth on the bench."

French cycling fans encountered in a bar in Paris were resolutely of a pro-Wiggo persuasion.

"He is a strong rider, and he also has a good moral side," says one, referring to the moment on Sunday, when Wiggins slowed the main group of riders down, after tacks were scattered over the road, to allow those with punctures to catch up.

"That shows a man of character, but also a man of heart."

Continue reading the main story
Bradley's medals on the track

2000 Olympics - bronze, team pursuit

2003 World Championships - gold, 4km individual pursuit

2004 Olympics - gold in 4km individual pursuit; silver in team pursuit; bronze in madison

2007 World Championships - gold in 4km individual pursuit and team pursuit

2008 Olympics - gold in 4km individual pursuit and team pursuit

2008 World Championships - gold in 4km individual pursuit, team pursuit and madison

BBC Sport: Wiggins on the verge of greatness

Another drinker commented: "We like the way he speaks his mind. He can express himself in a way that is shall we say... virile. That's rare these days, and it's good to see.

"Who cares if he's English! Let the best man win! In fact it's good to see an Englishman in charge. You're our oldest enemies! In any case he looks great, and we like the way he talks!"

In many ways Wiggins fulfils the expectations in France of what an Englishman ought to be like. He's seen as stylish, slightly eccentric, gentlemanly, outspoken, and humorous.

Forty years ago the French warmed to another English rider, Tom Simpson, who went on to die in tragic circumstances during the 1967 Tour.

For L'Equipe's Alexandre Roos, it is no surprise that Simpson is Wiggins's role model.

"We had a long talk about it, and he told me how much he admired Simpson for standing up for his Britishness at a time when it was not easy to do so.

"Back then British riders who wanted a career had to leave Britain and they all ended up being forced to fit the mould in some continental team.

"But Simpson refused that. He wanted to do things his way. He was a maverick and that is why Wiggins likes him."

So will there be resentment in France, if Sunday's podium is topped by an Englishman? Not for a minute, says Yves Blanc.

"Let's face it, you came with some great riders, and you may end with not one on the podium, but two if Chris Froome comes second.

"On top of that, if Cavendish wins the last stage, it'll be a record fourth in a row on the Champs-Elysees for him, and he'll be on a podium too.

"We're impressed. These guys aren't cheats. No-one's going to say they stole the race. What else is there to do but applaud

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  wjk on Sun 22 Jul - 16:23

Come on Cavendish!
Well done Bradley

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  Fern on Sun 22 Jul - 16:34

What a super race overall wasn't it

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  Panda on Sun 22 Jul - 16:47



That's 1 2 3 for Britain , Amazing.!!!!! They are cycling in the Olympics in 6 days time, 250K, how many medals will they win. Just watching a report
from Eccleston where Wiggins lives , in a local pub. Bradley is married and his Wife is a keen cyclist, just as well.!!!! He slowed to let Cavendish win
and and everyone respected him for that because Froome is also an excellent cyclist and apparently agreed to let Wiggins have the lead on condition
he is team Leader next Year. They are suggesting that Wiggins will be made a Knight in the NY Honours List.












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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  wjk on Sun 22 Jul - 17:22

I think Bradley Wiggins should now light the Olympic torch
A great sportsman and a lovely gent by all accounts

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  Panda on Sun 22 Jul - 17:39

wjk wrote:I think Bradley Wiggins should now light the Olympic torch
A great sportsman and a lovely gent by all accounts

Hi wjk, this Olympics is arranging something special for David Beckham because he did not get to light the Olympic Torch, his wife Victoria is already in the U.K. rehearsing her song with the Spice Girls, Cold Play, Elton John, other singers ......is this to a be repeat of the Jubilee Concert?????? If Seb Coe
and the other Members of Locog stop chasing Celebrities and remember the Games embraces Countries around the World .

I agree Bradley should light the Olympic Flame but they have probably chosen someone but keeping it secret. If it's not Bradley can they tell the
person they can't do it now?

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  cherry1 on Sun 22 Jul - 22:11


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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  wjk on Sun 22 Jul - 22:52

Panda wrote:
wjk wrote:I think Bradley Wiggins should now light the Olympic torch
A great sportsman and a lovely gent by all accounts

Hi wjk, this Olympics is arranging something special for David Beckham because he did not get to light the Olympic Torch, his wife Victoria is already in the U.K. rehearsing her song with the Spice Girls, Cold Play, Elton John, other singers ......is this to a be repeat of the Jubilee Concert?????? If Seb Coe
and the other Members of Locog stop chasing Celebrities and remember the Games embraces Countries around the World .

I agree Bradley should light the Olympic Flame but they have probably chosen someone but keeping it secret. If it's not Bradley can they tell the
person they can't do it now?
Oh god, please, not the Spice Girls et al
Will be interesting to see who the lighter of the torch will be. Like you say, I'd presume by now, the person had been told but it would have been nice to see Bradley light it.

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

Post  Panda on Thu 26 Jul - 7:41

How is Bradley Wiggins different from the average man?By Keith Moore

BBC News



Wiggins wins 2012 Tour de France

The final leg of Bradley Wiggins's Tour de France victory, through the streets of Paris, seemed a relatively gentle end to a gruelling 3,497km (2,172-mile) race.

Being able to ride that distance in three weeks, including punishing mountain climbs at altitudes that would leave most people gasping for air, is beyond the reach of all but the most highly trained endurance athletes.

The two main physiological differences between an elite endurance athlete like Wiggins and the average person are a bigger heart - which allows more oxygen-rich blood to be pumped to the muscles - and the muscles' capability to use that oxygen, said Loughborough University's Dr Keith Tolfrey.

Both heart size and oxygen utilisation by muscles can be improved with training.

The heart is made up of four chambers. The two lower chambers are called ventricles and are the pumps of the heart. The left ventricle pushes blood out from the heart to the rest of the body.

Dr Tolfrey said endurance athletes like Wiggins are likely to have huge left ventricles.

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The heart

Elite endurance athletes typically have larger than usual left ventricles
Regular exercise improves heart health and increases cardiac output, leading to lower resting heart rates

He said supplying blood to the muscles during exercise was like trying to fill a bath with containers of water.

Most people are trying to fill that bath up with a container the size of a thimble, whereas for highly trained athletes like Wiggins, who have bigger hearts, it is like using a bucket.

One of the signs of a highly trained heart is a person's resting heart rate. Both athletes and people of average fitness require a similar amount of oxygen to be delivered to organs and muscles while at rest, said Dr Tolfrey.

The normal amount the heart needs to work while a person is resting is 70 beats per minute, but to do the same job in endurance athletes, the body typically only needs 40 beats per minute.

The cyclist Miguel Indurain was reported to have a resting heart rate of just 28 beats per minute.

'Tenacity and desire'

Former British cyclist Chris Boardman said he had a resting heart rate of 38 at his peak. He won three stages of the Tour De France during his career, sometimes cycling up to eight hours non-stop to train.

"If you want it enough and apply yourself the right way, I think you can get to podium level on just sheer tenacity and desire," Boardman said.

"Once you get to podium level, those people have that and the only thing that sets you apart is what you're born with naturally. So you can get to the top just on desire and aptitude, then the difference becomes genetic."

Boardman won a gold medal at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona
Being able to actually use the oxygen when it reaches the muscle is mainly down to the amount of mitochondria in the cells.

Mitochondria are like the muscle's battery, the powerhouse producing the energy a muscle needs.

"All of us can actually improve that side of our body, and we can improve the functioning of the heart as well," Dr Tolfrey said.

"It's just that most of us mere mortals can't improve it to the extent that Bradley Wiggins has."

A person's endurance potential can be measured by taking a VO2 max reading, which shows how much oxygen is used per minute for every kilogram of body weight.

A typical male of Wiggins's age who does not do much training would be likely to have a VO2 max between 35 and 45.

Dr Tolfrey said Wiggins was likely to have a value above 70, possibly even as high as 80, which is a "huge difference".

Not only are elite athletes able to use more oxygen, they can also do it for longer periods of time.

Prof Jose Gonzalez-Alonso of Brunel University said there was evidence the adaptations associated with endurance training also affected the brain and nervous system.

"The perception that you feel you are tired is not only accompanied by limitations in oxygen delivery to muscles, but also to the brain," he said.

"So it's possible that when you are very well trained that in a way you delay impairment of oxygen delivery to the brain."

As well as his endurance, Wiggins's power of recovery will be tested when, only weeks after his Tour de France victory, he tries to follow it up with Olympic glory at the London Games.

He is aiming for a fourth Olympic gold medal, which would help cement his place among the greatest endurance athletes Britain has ever produced.

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Re: Now that's what I call Sportsmanship

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