Wiggins apologises over Tour withdrawal

Bradley Wiggins rides through Billinge to the applause of local people who turned out to see him in The Tour of Britain race

Bradley Wiggins rides through Billinge to the applause of local people who turned out to see him in The Tour of Britain race

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TOUR de France winner Bradley Wiggins has apologised for withdrawing from the remainder of the Tour of Britain with a stomach bug.

Wiggins, whose wife hails from Shevington, won the gruelling French race on July 22 and his fourth Olympic gold in the August 1 time-trial at Hampton Court, but was a non-starter on today’s Tour of Britain sixth stage from Welshpool to Caerphilly.

“I’m sorry to have to pull out of the Tour,” said Wiggins on Team Sky’s official website, www.teamsky.com.

“I’ve loved the last six days, meeting so many people around the country and enjoying those crowds along the roads. It’s been a great experience, but this bug sadly means I’ll now miss the climax this weekend.

“I’m sorry I can’t continue and would like to thank all those fans, of all ages, for the support. Those fans have really inspired us this week and this summer.”

The 32-year-old was 41st overall after stage five to Stoke, 12 minutes three seconds behind race leader Leigh Howard (Orica-GreenEdge).