Wiggins challenging for top 20 overall in Tour de France

Bradley Wiggins, Tour de France 2009, stage 1 TT, July 4 2009

After his impressive ride in yesterday's opening time trial, Bradley Wiggins announced he was aiming for a top 20 place in this year's Tour de France.

"I've come here to do well, looking at GC and a possible top 20," he said. "Physically I'm in the shape to go top 20 on GC, maybe top 15, but obviously that takes so much more than just being able to sustain a certain level.

"It might all fall apart in the third week, I might get to Ventoux and feel exhausted, but you can't win a raffle if you don't buy a ticket, so we'll have a go."

Wiggins has lost another two kilograms in body weight since his ground-breaking ride in the Giro d'Italia that saw him stay with the race's protagonists in the mountains during the first ten days, and now has the freedom to ride for himself.

"Christian [Vande Velde] is coming back from injury. He's still our leader on the road, so if he punctures in the TTT we'll wait for him, if I puncture they won't wait for me. That's fine, Christian's proved in the past he's a team laeader and he'll get better as this race goes on, and by the third week I might be in a body bag and he might be flying."

If Wiggins can make up 20 seconds on Cancellara, and two seconds on Contador in the team time trial in Montpellier on Tuesday he'll reach another of his targets for this year's race. "Yellow is my goal in the first week. If I get yellow, or I'm still close after the team time trial, defend through the Pyrenees, then it's just in to the Alps. I should have a good time trial in Annecy."

Wiggins, who wore an iPod during the time trial to block out any distractions, said that his third place behind Cancellara and Contador had helped him get over the disappointment of being disqualified from a 10-mile time trial two weeks ago. "I used an 808 today, just in case the CTT were out there in their fleeces and woolly hats."

TOUR DE FRANCE 2009

Tour de France 2009 - the hub: Index to reports, photos, previews and more.

STAGE REPORTS

Stage one: Cancellara wins opening time trial

NEWS

Tour de France 2009 News Index

Wiggins challenging for top 20 overall

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EXCLUSIVE VIDEOS

Stage two: Mark Cavendish on the Tour

Stage one: Jonathan Vaughters on Bradley Wiggins' chances

TOUR DE FRANCE 2009 PHOTOS

Stage one photo gallery by Graham Watson

Team presentation by Andy Jones

Team presentation by Graham Watson

TOUR GUIDE

Tour de France 2009 - the hub

Tour de France 2009: Who's riding

Tour de France 2009: Team guide

About the Tour de France

FEATURES

Tour de France 2009 on TV: Eurosport and ITV4 schedules

Big names missing from 2009 Tour de France

Tour de France anti-doping measures explained

Brits in the Tours: From Robinson to Cavendish

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Simon Richardson
Simon Richardson

Editor of Cycling Weekly magazine, Simon has been working at the title since 2001. He fell in love with cycling when channel surfing in 1989 and happening across the greatest ever edition of the Tour de France. He's been a Greg LeMond fan ever since. He started racing in 1995 when moving to university in North Wales gave him more time to train and some amazing roads to train on. He raced domestically for several years, riding everything from Surrey leagues to time trials, track and even a few Premier Calendars. In 2000 he spent one season racing in Belgium with the Kingsnorth International Wheelers. 


Since working for Cycling Weekly he has written product reviews, fitness features, pro interviews, race coverage and news. He has covered the Tour de France more times than he can remember along with two Olympic Games and many other international and UK domestic races. He can still be seen at his club's evening races through the summer but he still hasn't completed the CW5000 challenge!


SIMON IS CURRENTLY RIDING

Road bike: Pinarello K8S with Shimano Dura Ace

TT bike: Specialized Venge road bike with FFWD wheels and Easton Attack TT bars

Gravel bike: N/A

Training bike: Rourke custom hand made with Reynolds 853 steel