Thursday, 2 August 2012

Wiggins turns his podium into a platform

Huge congratulations to Bradley Wiggins on his gold medal of course, but also good on him for using his place on top of the podium as a platform to talk about cycling safety. Whatever your views on compulsory cycle helmets and the like, there is nothing wrong with the Olympic and Tour de France champion using his moment in the spotlight to say what he believes.

Some will suggest that it is not for him (or Lizzie Armistead, who has said similar) to talk about politics. But if they know what they are talking about - and as road racers they clearly do - then they have every right to say it, even from the podium steps.

There have been plenty of politicians of all parties, including Ed Miliband, Nick Clegg and William Hague, who have used their twitter accounts to hitch themselves to the gold medal bandwagon, tweeting within seconds of the result. If politicians want to get involved in spot, then it is surely fair for sportsmen and women to dip into politics.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I had a nasty cycling accident when I was 5. If I hadn't been wearing a helmet, then I would have done more than just scrape my chin open.

No one thinks twice about putting seat belts on these days. The benefits are obvious. Same with wearing a motorcycle helmet.

Sure the man who was killed yesterday probably wouldn't have been saved by a cycle helmet, but most people who are injured or killed while out on bikes aren't injured or killed due to bus and lorry collisions. It's collisions with smaller vehicles that are the main problem.

But motorists also need to drive more safely. The attitudes of drivers in Cornwall towards cyclists is appalling, in my experience.

In the end, both sides need to take action. Cyclists need to think about their safety and that of others more plus proper highways use, and drivers need to realise that they're driving death on wheels.