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Great Britain’s Bradley Wiggins continued his dream season Wednesday, winning gold in the Olympic time trial.
Wiggins, who won the Tour de France last month on the strength of two time trial stage wins, topped Tony Martin (Germany) by 42 seconds and Tour runner-up Chris Froome (Great Britain) by 1:08 in the 44km race.
American Taylor Phinney was fourth, at 1:58, giving the 22-year-old two fourth-place results in these Olympic Games.
Wiggins’ win earned him his fourth career gold medal and seventh Olympic medal overall, making him the most decorated British Olympic athlete in history.
Wiggins, crowned Britain’s first Tour champion 10 days ago, hit an average speed of 52.11 kph for the 44km race against the clock, which started and finished at the former residence of King Henry VIII, Hampton Court Palace.
Reigning world champion Martin battled back from a fractured scaphoid in the Tour de France for his silver medal. Defending Olympic champion Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland), who was also racing with injury after banging his shoulder Saturday in a crash during the men’s road race, finished well out of the medals at 2:14.
It is Wiggins’ first Olympic title on the road, having won his three previous golds in track cycling’s pursuit events.
“I cannot put it into words. I wouldn’t do it justice,” said Wiggins. “To win an Olympic gold in your home city. When you win in the velodrome, there are three or four thousand people cheering.
“Here, around the streets of London, the noise is just amazing. I don’t think anything will top that. I’ve just won the Tour de France. It’s just been phenomenal.”
Now with a total of seven Olympic medals including four gold, Wiggins has
overtaken Sir Steve Redgrave’s previous record tally of six medals for a
Briton. Redgrave won five gold and one bronze and for Wiggins, the retired rower is still one ahead of him.
“It’s not so important that you have seven medals if they’re not the right
color,” said Wiggins. “The main number is four. Just to be mentioned in the same breathe as (Sir Steve) Redgrave is an absolute honor, with Chris Hoy.
“To be up there with those guys is very special.”