latest music news
Velodrome fans cheer Wiggins home
Scores of jubilant cycling fans celebrated Bradley Wiggins's historic Tour de France win at the track where he first experienced the thrill of racing.
Supporters cheered the 32-year-old to victory from the Herne Hill Velodrome, in south-east London.
Wiggins grew up in the shadow of the venue after moving to London from Belgium as a boy and began his racing career at the 450m long track as a 12-year-old.
Twenty years on, a crowd gathered around a big screen TV at the track to watch the triple Olympic gold medallist secure a spot in history as the first Briton to win the gruelling 2,173 mile race.
Hillary Peachey, chairwoman of the Herne Hill Velodrome Trust, said: "The atmosphere has been incredible.
"All the children that are riding here today are aspiring to be the next Bradley Wiggins and when he led Mark Cavendish along the Champs Elysees it was the most electric atmosphere.
"Bradley Wiggins started out here at the age of 12 when he was spotted as an incredible talent.
"He's a top athlete and he has trained for the Tour de France and what he's achieved requires keeping the ultimate fitness level so when he comes to the Olympics he will be at his best."
Racer Dan Gardner, 16, from Haywards Heath, near Brighton, said: "It's amazing, it makes you want it more.
"Today when you are racing and you think that Bradley was racing in the same place 10, 20, years ago it makes you think that dreams can come true.
"He's made it so perhaps one of us here today can make it as well.
"I've followed him for a few years, ever since I've been cycling.
"He's down to earth, that's why I like him.
"I'm sure he will place well at the Olympics."
Harry Peachey, 10, described Wiggins's triumph as "amazing".
He said: "We all knew he was going to win it but he won it in style.
"It is incredible how they travel quite fast across France and they keep on sprinting until right to the final bit.
"I think Bradley has a good chance (at the Olympics).
"He will probably win some gold medals."
Jan Slater, 74, from Forest Hill, south-east London, said she remembered Wiggins as a nine-year-old racer at Herne Hill: "He was really into his racing.
"He used to sit in the clubroom with a towel over his head with his earphones in listening to The Jam. He would have been about nine.
"He was a very good cyclist, he was really dedicated to it. He was serious about it. He did not play around.
"When he was about 12 he would say to everyone that he was going to win the Tour de France and here we go, he was right.
"It was absolutely fantastic (for him to win). I can't believe it.
"I would like to see him come down here and ride round in his yellow jersey. It would be absolutely fantastic."
Kimberley English, 16, who finished second in the women's points race at today's South East Regional Track Championship, said: "I thought it was amazing to see a British win; Bradley over all and helping his teammate Cav win the stage was great.
"I'm proud to be British.
"He and Chris Froome literally blew everyone away.
"They have put the bar so high for next year, it has been really impressive to watch and it has inspired a lot of people."
Fellow racer Jocelyn Hunter, also 16, and her father Paul, 53, were among the crowd at Herne Hill Velodrome cheering "Wiggo".
"Being here where Bradley grew up, it encourages us to keep on our bike and work hard," she said.
Her father added: "It was exceptional that he has won, but even more than him winning that Cav won today as well.
"Cav has put his soul into the team, it was really a team effort.
"It's not just the Tour either, this started at the beginning of the year (for Wiggins).
"Nobody has won what he's won this year.
"He's not a one-hit wonder, this is the result of 10 years of racing."
Bike shop owner Phil Burnett, 48, from Dorking, described the recent rise in the profile of competitive cycling as "like seeing your favourite band in the pub one year and the next year they're playing at Wembley".
On Wiggins' triumph he said: "It was just fantastic. I did not think I would see a British rider win the Tour de France, and I did not think it would be Bradley Wiggins.
"I do vaguely remember him racing here.
"To think that someone from here has gone on to do that is just great.
"To have a Brit in the yellow jersey lead out a Brit in the World Champion's jersey on the Champs-Elysees, that's as good as it can get."