Boardman backs Wiggins

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Published: Saturday 6th June 2015 by The News Editor

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Chris Boardman expects Sir Bradley Wiggins to take the UCI Hour Record to “the next level”.

Wiggins has conceded Boardman’s ‘absolute’ record for the longest distance cycled in 60 minutes is out of reach ahead of his Hour attempt on Sunday at the Lee Valley VeloPark.

But the 35-year-old is aiming to surpass Alex Dowsett’s mark of 52.937 kilometres by setting the standard for his generation.

Boardman, who recorded a distance of 56.375km in September 1996 in the now-outlawed aerodynamic ‘Superman’ position, anticipates Wiggins will attain his goal.

“I think Brad will take it to the next level,” Boardman, talking at Halfords’ Summer Press Show, told Press Association Sport.

Wiggins has targeted 55.250km, or 221 laps of the track at the velodrome which hosted the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The 2012 Tour de France winner and British, world and Olympic time-trial champion has track pedigree, including three Olympic gold medals, so will be in his element somewhat turning left and staring at the black line on the Siberian pine for 60 minutes.

“Without the superman position, that’s where (the record) should be,” added Boardman, of Wiggins’ 55km ambition.

Wiggins spoke to Boardman about the attempt for advice.

The only advice Boardman felt he could offer was that Wiggins should ride for more than 30 minutes at target pace, to feel the impact of fatigue in an event many believe to be cycling’s toughest.

Boardman until 2012 was key in British Cycling’s research and development team and set his mark with the aid of technology.

Interest in the record has been revived since the UCI, cycling’s world governing body, relaxed regulations governing equipment, allowing riders to use current track bikes.

Wiggins’ bike has been developed with assistance from car maker Jaguar, but there is one potential aerodynamic advantage he will not part with.

He has trimmed his beard for the attempt but has no plans to be clean shaven.

Boardman has tried to test the impact of hair on aerodynamics but struggled to come to conclusions.

He added: “If I had to guess, then I would say take it off. It might not hinder, but I can’t imagine it helps.”

Published: Saturday 6th June 2015 by The News Editor

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