After retiring from cycling, Sir Bradley Wiggins briefly took up which sport?

Of course, Sir Bradley Wiggins is best known as a former professional cyclist, on the track and, in the later part of his career, on the road. Indeed, he was knighted for services to cycling in the 2013 New Year Honours, having becoming the first cyclist to win the Tour de France and a Olympic gold medal – in the men’s individual time trial at the London Games – within the space of ten days the previous year. In fact, Wiggins won a total of eight Olympic medals, including gold medals at four successive Games, in Athens, Beijing, London and Rio de Janeiro, and was, until August, 2021, Britain’s most decorated Olympian.

Nevertheless, Wiggins called time on his 16-year professional cycling career in December, 2016 and, initially, took up indoor rowing ‘just to keep fit’. However, encouraged by the times he was recording, he took up the sport professionally and began training full-time, under the coaching and mentorship of double Olympic gold medallist James Cracknell. In June, 2017, Wiggins revealed that he would be competing at the British Rowing Indoor Championships (BRIC) the following December and, in the meantime, was attempting to increase his body weight to 100kg, or 220lb.

On December 9, 2017, Wiggins did indeed compete in the elite 2,000-metre race at the Lee Valley VeloPark, with Cracknell predicting a time between 6:01 and 6:05. However, Wiggins reportedly misheard an announcement early in the race and, believing a false start had been called, backed off for a stroke. He quickly realised his error and resumed rowing, but the damage was done and he finished with a time of 6:22.5, thereby placing twenty-first of 99 competitors. Clearly frustrated, he shook his head and left without comment and never returned to serious competition.

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