CYCLING fans in Mallorca were disappointed to hear that three-time Olympic gold medal winner Sir Bradley Wiggins had pulled out of this weekend’s Challenge Mallorca cycling race.
Wiggins – known as ‘Wiggo’ and renowned for his impressive sideburns – was initially listed as part of the Team Sky line-up to take part in the event, but he now looks likely to start his season off in the Tour of Qatar on February 8 instead of the Playa de Palma Mallorca Challenge.
While the 2012 Tour de France winner won’t be participating, the event will still see some of the world’s top cyclists take part in the 657 kilometre competition staged in different parts of the island.
Vuelta a España 2009 winner Alejandro Valverde of the Movistar team will be in action alongside other big names such as Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing), Dan Martin (Garmin-Sharp), Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ.fr) and Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal).
The cycling road race will begin this Thursday with the Ses Salines Trophy (175 kilometres) followed by the Andratx Trophy on Friday (149 kilometres). The Serra de Tramuntana Trophy (165 kilometres) will be held on Saturday and the event will conclude this Sunday with the Playa de Palma Trophy (168 kilometres).
Young Mallorcan cyclists can also participate in a special event on Sunday, February 1, with a number of races for different age groups being staged. Winners will be presented with trophies and get a chance to meet their cycling heroes.