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Wiggins recovers after bike crash

Tour de France-winning cyclist Bradley Wiggins and his personal coach, Shane Sutton, were both knocked off their bikes and taken to hospital in separate road accidents within the space of 15 hours.

Wiggins, 32, suffered a bruised hand and ribs in his collision with a van near his home in Lancashire on Wednesday but was allowed home less than 24 hours later.

Great Britain Cycling Team head coach Sutton, 55, sustained a small bleed on the brain in a crash with a car in Manchester and remains in hospital in a stable condition .

Australian-born Sutton, from Cardiff, has worked with the British team since 2002 and has been credited with playing a major role in transforming the fortunes of the sport in this country - including helping Wiggins to many successes including the world's toughest bike race and this year's time trial gold medal at the London Olympics.

Wiggins was taken by ambulance to Royal Preston Hospital following his crash in Crow Orchard Road, Wrightington, shortly after 6pm.

The incident happened when the driver of a white Vauxhall Astra Envoy, a local woman, drove out of a garage forecourt.

It was reported that Wiggins was riding a mountain bike to meet a group of local cyclists near to his home in Eccleston.

Lancashire Police said they intended to speak to the driver, who was uninjured, as part of their inquiries.

Sutton was in a collision with a blue Peugeot 206 driven by a 61-year-old man on the A6 Stockport Road in Levenshulme shortly before 8.55am.

He suffered a head injury but was conscious as he was taken to Salford Royal Hospital.

The driver of the car was not injured. No arrests were made and inquiries are ongoing.

A spokeswoman for British Cycling said: "It is extremely rare that our riders and coaches are hurt while out cycling on the road, even rarer that two incidents should occur in a short space of time, and we wish Shane and Bradley a speedy recovery.

"Cycling is not an intrinsically dangerous activity but there is much more to be done to improve conditions for cyclists on the roads.

"British Cycling is calling on the Government to put cycling at the heart of transport policy to ensure that cycle safety is built into the design of all new roads, junctions and transport projects, rather than being an afterthought."

Father-of-two Wiggins was due to attend a number of interviews to promote his new book, My Time.

He would have appeared on the Chris Evans show on BBC Radio 2 and later recorded an item for The Graham Norton Show on BBC1 to be broadcast on Friday night, when other guests are due to be Cameron Diaz and Rod Stewart.

Wiggins was also scheduled to take part in a webchat with The Guardian which has serialised extracts of his autobiography this week.

In a statement on its website, Team Sky said: "He (Wiggins) suffered minor injuries, including a bruised hand and ribs, and was kept at the Royal Preston Hospital overnight as a precaution.

"Bradley has now gone home to recuperate with his family and there will be no long-term injury problems."

Team Sky's Dr Richard Freeman said: "Bradley has been discharged from hospital after suffering minor injuries, including bruises to his right hand and ribs, but is expected to make a full and speedy recovery. He is now going to spend the weekend at home convalescing with his family."

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