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Bradley Wiggins withdraws from Volta Ciclista a Catalunya

Wiggins says he's pulling out of the Volta a Catalunya to better prepare for Paris-Roubaix

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MILAN (AFP) — Bradley Wiggins will withdraw from the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya, which starts Monday, his Sky team announced on Saturday.

The 33-year-old, who won the 2012 Tour de France as well as the Olympic time-trial gold medal, has set his sights on Paris-Roubaix April 13.

Wiggins, who also won Olympic gold in the individual pursuit in 2004 and 2008 as well as the 2008 team pursuit, will take part in only one race, the 200.9km Scheldeprijs on April 9, before turning his attentions to Paris-Roubaix.

“We have modified the program to assure our progress,” said Wiggins. “After talking with my coaches, we have decided that it would be better to have two weeks of intensive training before coming back for the Paris-Roubaix.”

Wiggins, who was succeeded by compatriot and teammate Chris Froome as Tour champion in 2013, will also take part in the Amgen Tour of California in May before the Criterium du Dauphiné in June, a race he won in 2011 and 2012.