You may have a hard time recalling the name Bradley Wiggins. This is probably because Wiggins was beaten numerous times over the years by cycling champion Lance Armstrong, including a famous third place finish in 2009 against Armstrong’s first place victory. But after the scandal broke of Armstrong abusing drugs for years, including steroids, Wiggins was heartbroken as well as prideful. Upon viewing the hour and a half Oprah interview with Armstrong, Wiggins had this to say: “There’s this element of being quite smug about the whole thing. Watching him suddenly cave in after all these years of lying so convincingly, there was a lot of anger, a lot of sadness and I was slightly emotional as well, if I’m honest.”
Wiggins shows a balance between despair and smugness upon hearing the news, but was largely unsympathetic to his situation. “By the end of the hour and a half, I had the best feeling in the world. Part of me didn’t want to watch it. The fan in me didn’t want that perception of him as an amazing athlete to be broken. Then I thought, ‘You deserve everything you got.’ So within two hours of watching the whole thing, the emotions were up and down. By the end I didn’t feel any sympathy for him at all.”
Wiggins hopes that people will look at Armstrong as well as drug abuse in sports differently, a situation that may have held back Wiggins career from his unwillingness to cheat the system like a poker game. Wiggins goes on to say that he feels proud that he never had to explain to his son what all this means.
Armstrong was stripped of all seven of his Tour De France title victories in October of last year.