Lancashire’s cycling hero Wiggo goes into Olympic history

Bradley Wiggins
Bradley Wiggins

Sir Bradley Wiggins moved into Olympic folklore with his fifth gold medal and eighth in all as Great Britain won the team pursuit in Rio last night.

Wiggins, who lives in Eccleston, near Chorley, and is frequently seen training around the county, became the first Briton to win eight Olympic medals.

Burke, Doull, Clancy and Wiggins on the podium

Burke, Doull, Clancy and Wiggins on the podium

Together with his teammates Ed Clancy, Steven Burke, Owain Doull, Wiggins bettered their own world record in the four-man, four-kilometres event - set in the first round 80 minutes earlier - to win gold in three minutes 50.265 seconds.

Wiggins surpassed fellow cyclist Sir Chris Hoy’s cumulative total of seven Olympic medals and joined rower Sir Steve Redgrave on five golds.

“It was never about that for me,” said Wiggins, who now has five gold, one silver and two bronze medals.

“The first people I bumped into when I came off the track were Steve Redgrave and Chris Hoy. They’re my heroes in Olympic sport.

Great Britain's Ed Clancy, Steven Burke, Owain Doull and Sir Bradley Wiggins (front) during Men's Team Pursuit on the seventh day of the Rio Olympics Games, Brazil.

Great Britain's Ed Clancy, Steven Burke, Owain Doull and Sir Bradley Wiggins (front) during Men's Team Pursuit on the seventh day of the Rio Olympics Games, Brazil.

“Just to be in the same breath as those guys is an honour. It was more about personally what it meant to me.

“I take myself to Sydney in 2000 and what that meant to me as a 20-year-old kid wandering round there, watching Steve win his fifth gold there and thinking how incredible and amazing it was.

“I’d come away with a bronze medal there and thought that’s it. If I have to go to the job centre on Monday morning and get a job, I can always say I’ve got Olympic bronze.

“To be here 16 years on, with five gold medals to myself, I never imagined that for one minute. It’s just something to tell the kids about when they’re older.”