Three-medal Wiggins elevated to super-hero by mainstream media

There's nothing that sates the British tabloids more than British sporting success. And whilst Australia came out as the top team at the Athens velodrome - hopefully stemming the bad publicity Oz track racing has been getting due to a doping scandal - the second place achieved by the British team is a major achievement. Wiggins told the world that he hopes his success will encourage youngsters to take up competitive cycle-sport. And his involvement in the Tour of Britain, starting 1st September, should guarantee more mainstream coverage...
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Last night's news programmes in Britain wallowed in the Olympic success of Bradley Wiggins, lauding him as the first British man for nearly 100 years to win three medals in one Olympiad.

His bronze in yesterday's Madison was perhaps not the medal he had hope for but it was won in dramatic, Lycra-shredding fashion when team-mate Rob Hayles crashed half way through the 200-lap race.

The media loved this stiff upper lip angle. The Daily Mirror has been carrying daily track reports from Athens. Traditionally, British newspapers carry next to no reports about cycling, even when Brits become world champions.

This may change following Wiggins' medal hat-trick. Here's how Mirror reporter Alex Spink covers the Wiggins story:

"Just when we thought we had seen it all from this British Olympic team, cyclists Bradley Wiggins and Rob Hayles found a new way to take our breath away last night...It was the way the pair battled back from a high-speed collision in the middle of the race that elevated this effort up beside some of Britain's golden memories of this Olympiad...the stuff of which legends are truly made."

Wiggins will be the leader of the Credit Agricole team which competes in the Tour of Britain.

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