Bradley Wiggins has said this year's Tour de France is "null and void" and admitted he thought about quitting cycling after the doping scandals that have rocked the race and saw his Cofidis team quit the Tour after Cristian Moreni tested positive.
Speaking in a press conference at the Manchester velodrome on Friday after returning from the Tour, Wiggins said the race had lost total credibility after a string of doping scandals.
"The whole thing has just lost complete credibility," Wiggins said.
"No one's got any faith in who's in yellow now. The whole thing is null and void as far as I'm concerned this year. I don't blame people for doubting the credibility of the Tour de France for the next five, six, seven years.?
"My initial reaction was 'I'm going to get out of the sport'. It was sheer anger but once I settled down a bit, I'm willing to see this thing through. So far on this Tour five people have spoiled it out of nearly 200 who started in London. I've had no regrets that I'm not still there. It's not a nice place to be. The whole thing has just completely lost credibility as far as I'm concerned."
"The start in London was amazing but things slowly started deteriorating. It's wrong to say everyone is doing it. I'm not bitter but I am angered by it. It has made me determined to come through this whole thing and prove that there can be clean winners in this sport. That's made my determination even stronger."
Wiggins is hopefully that the new generation of riders coming through would eventually replace the older riders and help clean up the sport.
"There's a new generation coming through of younger guys but unfortunately it's the older guys who were there back in '98 who are still willing to push the boundaries and see how far they can go without being caught," he said.
New e-bike race series announced for 2022
E-Bike Grand Prix Series will start in 2022 in Dubai, and features ten rounds overall
By Ryan Dabbs •
James Shaw’s WorldTour return confirmed as he signs with EF Education-Nippo
The 25-year-old Brit suffered the disappointment of being dropped from the WorldTour in 2018, but he’s back next year
By Alex Ballinger •