Sir Bradley Wiggins insists that he will not settle for second best when he attempts to break the UCI Hour Record on Sunday evening, admitting anything less than a new record will be a failure.
Wiggins will aim to beat Alex Dowsett’s mark of 52.937km, which the Movistar rider set in Manchester last month, and is already bullish on getting closer to Chris Boardman’s all-time record of 56.375km.
While weather conditions may prevent the former Team Sky man from getting close to that distance, the number one goal remains surpassing Dowsett and writing his name in the record books.
In an interview with Sky Sports, Wiggins said: “There is no second place in the hour. You either do it or you fail. No one says, ‘Well, you finished second in the hour’. You failed.
“To put yourself up there for one hour and go through that is quite a big thing in itself. I have incredible respect for anyone who would put themselves up there and do that.
“To put yourself on that list potentially if you break it, with everyone who has gone before – and even if someone comes along subsequently and breaks that record again – you are always in the record books as having held that record.
“What’s really nice about it is ‘Former hour record holder’. It has still got a nice sound to it.”
With one of the most storied records in cycling in his sights, Wiggins admitted that he is loving the training for his hour ride.
Many riders who have attempted the feat, including Jack Bobridge and Dame Sarah Storey recently, have described just how hard it is to break, Wiggins joked that he would love to make a career out of it.
“It’s enjoyable. If I could have a career out of doing hour records, I would have done,” he said. “It’s a shame it’s not like boxing, where you just build up to one boxing match every 12 months.
“I’m not getting any younger, but I’m in prime position in my career, the prime time to break it, with no distraction from the road and one year out from the Olympic Games. It’s now or never.”
Wiggins’s Hour Record attempt will be shown live on Sky Sports and Freeview channel Pick on Sunday, with the programme starting at 6pm.