Tour win ‘more impressive’ than Olympic Gold

July 31, 2012, 4:55 PM GMT+0

69% say winning Tour de France 'more impressive' than gold at the Olympics

Though already establishing himself a triple Olympic track gold medallist, British cyclist Bradley Wiggins also won the Tour de France last weekend, which over two thirds of the British public feel is more impressive than winning gold at the Olympics, our poll shows. Meanwhile around one in six feel that a gold medal at the Olympics is a more impressive a feat.

  • 69% say winning the Tour de France is more impressive than a gold at the Olympics
  • 17% believe that winning an Olympic Gold medal for cycling is more impressive than winning the Tour de France

These results mirror our recent separate poll for the Sunday Times prior to the Tour's conslusion, where a higher proportion of respondents said that If Bradley Wiggins wins the Tour de France it will be more impressive than any likely British Olympic victories (43%) while less than half as many said that any Olympic victories secured by British athletes would be more impressive (20%).

Older age groups favour Tour

The results also serve to highlight how older age groups are more impressed by a win in the Tour de France than younger respondents who express more enthusiasm for Olympic gold, though the Tour was picked by the majority of all ages.

  • Around three quarters of those aged 40 to 59 and those aged 60 or above claim the French cycling tournament is more impressive (72% vs. 74%)
  • This is compared to just three in five respondents aged between 18 and 24 (59%) who also say a Tour win is most impressive
  • Meanwhile more than a quarter of 18-24 year olds would vote gold at the Olympics as the most impressive (26%), next to just one in six people over 60 (16%)

Thirty two year old Bradley Wiggins celebrated the victory for British cycling last weekend when he became the first Briton to win the Tour de France in its 109-year history, just ten days before he is due to compete in the velodrome for the London Olympics.

‘Gold or nothing’

Following the win, in his guest article for the Guardian, Wiggins has proclaimed: “It’s gold or nothing in London now;” conceding that despite tough competition, it is realistic that he can win.

“I've set a precedent now for performances. I can't sit and say I'll be happy with a silver; or happy with a bronze,” he writes. “It's got to be gold now.”

There has been some debate over whether Wiggins’ achievement was in fact the greatest ever by a British sportsman, or if it can be topped by Olympic achievements. Wiggins insisted that winning gold at the Games won’t be better or worse than his Tour win, and he likes to think of it as an entirely separate thing.

The Independent reports that, gold or not, Wiggins managing to switch from pursuits in the velodrome, to taking on the biggest goal possible in the “tumultuous world of road-racing” is still a great testimony to his sporting versatility.

See the full details and results here or as part of our poll for the Sunday Times (pg 12)