The Queen has sent her “warmest congratulations” to Bradley Wiggins after the Team Sky rider became the first Briton to win the Tour de France.
Wiggins can now count the Queen among his growing army of fans and the 32-year-old is tipped to receive a knighthood following his Tour heroics, with one bookmaker, Coral, offering odds of just 2/1.
“I send you my warmest congratulations on becoming the first British cyclist ever to win the Tour de France,” read the Queen’s message, sent on Monday when Wiggins returned to the UK and released on Tuesday.
“Your historic achievement of claiming overall victory in this prestigious event is a great testament to the efforts of you and your team-mates.”
Wiggins has little time to dwell on his achievements and must now turn his attention to Saturday’s Olympic road race, which starts and finish in front of Buckingham Palace on The Mall, where the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will watch the riders set off.
Wiggins, along with Tour de France runner-up Chris Froome, will then contest the time trial on Wednesday August 1.
The Queen’s message comes after Prime Minister David Cameron described Wiggins’ victory as one of the greatest moments in British sporting history.
“Like everyone in the country, I’m absolutely delighted,” Cameron told the BBC. “Bradley Wiggins has scaled one of the great heights of British sporting achievement. It’s an immense feat of physical and mental ability and aptitude.
“I think the whole country wants to say ‘well done, brilliant’, the perfect backdrop and start to the Olympics.
“It will put the country in the right mood. It’s going to be an incredible festival of sport we’re going to see. Bradley and the whole team’s great success in the Tour de France – I watched Mark Cavendish’s great sprint finish as well – that whole team performance will lift the spirits of the country.”