Sir Dave Brailsford: Team Sky boss defends methods at British Cycling

Sir Dave Brailsford and Shane Sutton
Sir Dave Brailsford and Shane Sutton were colleagues at British Cycling

Team Sky boss Sir Dave Brailsford has defended his training methods as an investigation into British Cycling is set to be published.

Former technical director Shane Sutton resigned in April over claims of discrimination, which he denies.

The findings of a review into an alleged bullying culture at British Cycling are to be published soon.

"I'm uncompromising in trying to achieve success," said Brailsford. "I don't think I treated people wrongly."

He added: "I don't think I was vindictive, I don't think I was biased, I don't think I was malicious."

Australian Sutton was found guilty of using sexist language towards cyclist Jess Varnish, but cleared of eight of the nine charges against him.

However, the nature of the allegations - and wider claims about the culture at British Cycling - prompted an independent inquiry led by British Rowing chairman Annamarie Phelps.

Brailsford became British Cycling performance director in 2003 and led Team GB to two cycling gold medals at the 2004 Olympics, improving that tally to eight in both 2008 and 2012.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Watch: Brailsford's tense grilling on Team Sky

"We started off as a British team who were second rate, nowhere in the world, with an attitude of gallant losers," said the 52-year-old. "We thought actually 'why can't we be the best in the world?'

"And I am uncompromising, I know that. Some people can cope with that environment, and some people can't.

"When I took over at British Cycling I tried to push hard. And there were some people I felt who shouldn't be there.

"So you get people who go. I'll never make any excuses about that."

In 2014 he left British Cycling to focus on Team Sky, having combined his role with both organisations after the road outfit formed in 2009.

Team Sky, who have won four of the past five Tours de France - one victory for Bradley Wiggins and three for Chris Froome - are currently the subject of a UK Anti-Doping investigation.

Brailsford has denied wrongdoing and there is no suggestion that he, Wiggins or Froome have done anything against the rules.

"When we set out with the Tour team and said we were going to try to win the Tour people laughed, they laughed at me," he said. "That was hard. Harder than now.

"And then when we didn't do very well, that was hard. Really hard. But then you believe in something, you keep working at it and you achieve it."

British cycling's success under Brailsford
2004 Olympics: two gold medals, one silver, one bronze2008 Olympics: eight gold, four silver, two bronze
2012 Olympics: eight gold, two silver, two bronzeTeam Sky: four Tour de France wins in five years

Top Stories