Team Sky has revealed its nine-man team for the 2012 Tour de France, led by three-time Olympic track champion Bradley Wiggins
and world road race champion Mark Cavendish.
There were plenty of raised eyebrows when Team Sky announced their goal to lead a Brit to win the Tour De France within five years of their inception in 2009, but Wiggins's form this year has seen him displace 2011 Tour winner Cadel Evans as favourite to win the yellow jersey in Paris on 22 July. Victories in Paris-Nice, the Tour de Romandie and the Criterium du Dauphine have forced Wiggins's odds from a high of 25/1 in September 2011 to a current 7/5, with Evans at 12/5 and 22/1 bar the two.
A potential problem for Team Sky is how they manage the ambitions of Wiggins and Mark Cavendish, who won the green jersey for the leading points scorer in the 2011 Tour when riding for HTC-Highroad. Cavendish joined Team Sky for 2012 after winning the world championship in Copenhagen, and the 20-time Tour stage winner will not be enamoured with playing second fiddle should the team make too many sacrifices to protect Wiggins.
Cavendish is 3/1 to defend his green jersey in Paris, but he will have his hands full with 22-year-old Slovak sensation Peter Sagan, who has won 13 races and stages this season and will be making his Tour De France debut. The race starts in Liege on 30 June.
Team Sky squad for Tour de France: Edvald Boasson Hagen, Mark Cavendish, Bernhard Eisel, Chris Froome, Christian Knees, Richie Porte, Michael Rogers, Kanstantsin Siutsou, Bradley Wiggins.