CHARTRES, France (AP) -Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome will share a glass of champagne during Sunday’s final stage of the Tour de France to celebrate Britain’s historic 1-2 in the most prestigious cycling race. Their better halves might not be up for it.
Wiggins’ wife and Froome’s girlfriend have been at the center of a Twitter row that started after Stage 11 when Froome was told to wait for his leader in the ascent to the ski station of La Toussuire. That day, Froome was clearly the best but his Sky team’s race strategy forced him to stay in his support role.
At the end of the stage, Froome’s girlfriend, Michelle Cound, took to Twitter to express her disappointment at Sky’s decision to fully back Wiggins in his bid to become the first British rider to win the Tour at the expense of her boyfriend.
“If you want loyalty, get a Froome dog… a quality I value… although being taken advantage of by others!” Cound wrote.
Catherine Wiggins was quick to respond, praising the great work of Wiggins’ teammates Mick Rogers and Richie Porte during that stage without mentioning Froome.
“See Mick Rogers and Richie Porte for examples of genuine, selfless effort and true professionalism,” she wrote.
The tweet was immediately followed by another short message from Cound, who retweeted Wiggins’ note with the comment “Typical!”
The dispute titillated a press room in search of drama in a race that offered nearly none but also attracted some riders’ attention. British rider David Millar, who’ll team up with Froome and Wiggins at the London Olympics, tweeted: “Oh SNAP! Sky have WAG WAR on Twitter. This (expletive) just got real.”
Froome, tipped by many as a future Grand Tour winner, has been a loyal and dedicated teammate to Wiggins but has sometimes expressed his frustrations and could not help showing his own strength in the mountains, making race followers wonder whether Sky was backing the right man on the road.
Their partners’ sniping flared again this week in the Pyrenees when Froome had to stay with Wiggins in the climb to Peyragudes, letting another stage victory slip away for the sake of his boss.
“Suddenly not so in the mood for Paris on Sunday, what a joke,” Cound wrote.
The South African photographer again expressed her disappointment following Friday’s 18th stage won by Mark Cavendish after an impressive collective performance by Sky.
“Team work is also about giving the people around you, that support you, a chance to shine in their own right,” Cound tweeted.
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