‘Cometh the hour, cometh the man’ is a proverb that gives us another set of Paradigmeers. Here are a group of people who changed the rules and as a result, the outcome in response to a particular situation. The GB Cycle Team at the Beijing Olympics provides us with an excellent example of this genre of Paradigmeer.
With a few notable exceptions such as Hugh Porter, Barry Hoban, Chris Boardman, Graeme Obree and Robert Miller, British Cycling had not dominated the cycling world. At the Beijing Olympics they did, winning seven out of ten gold medals and making Bradley Wiggins, Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton and Vicky Romero household names. Throw Mark Cavendish into the mix and now ask how this has happened. British Cycling Performance Director, Dave Brailsford, took the job in 1998 and changed the rules. The philosophy of ‘aggregation of marginal gains’ affected training, recovery, bikes, clothing and psychology and the paradigm shifted.
Some of this must be attributable to the emergence and development of talent but there has to be more to it than this because it would be highly remarkable for so many world class athletes to be performing in the same era. GB Cycling took a different approach to the preparation of their team to achieve Olympic success.
2010 has seen the Sky sponsored team competing in the major professional road races and tours around the world with their aim of achieving a British winner of the Tour de France. Bradley Wiggins leads the way starting with the Giro d’Italia starting on 8th May and the Tour de France on 3rd July.