Team Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford says that excluding Sir Bradley Wiggins from the 2014 Tour de France was “horrible”.
Wiggins, the first British winner in 2012, was not selected in Team Sky’s nine-man squad for the Tour, which begins in Leeds tomorrow, much to the disappointment of his legion of fans.
The 34-year-old four-time Olympic champion has had previous disagreements with Chris Froome, the 2013 winner and Team Sky’s leader again this year, and despite pledging his support was omitted from the race by Brailsford, who in his former role as British Cycling performance director has worked with Wiggins for more than 10 years.
Brailsford said: “From a performance point of view, from a professional point of view it’s straightforward, but from a personal point of view it kept me awake at night.
“I’m not going to lie, contrary to popular opinion I have got some emotions.
“From an emotional point of view, it was horrible. A horrible, horrible, horrible place to find myself in.
“It was a very, very difficult decision. But ultimately I’ve got to stick with what got us to this point in time.
“I’ve got to do my job and think about how to win. You take all the emotion out of it.”