Cycling news - Sir Bradley Wiggins warns against celebrating Team Sky's demise
Sir Bradley Wiggins believes that cycling could suffer if Team Sky closes at the end of this season.
Sky is set end its sponsorship deal with the side in 2019, meaning the team will lose its name and its main source of income.
A new sponsor will be needed if Sir Dave Brailsford wants to continue his dominance of the sport.
Wiggs, who won the Tour de France with Team Sky in 2012, warned against celebrating the demise of the team.
Speaking to talkSPORT, Wiggins said: “People need to be careful what they wish for because if Sky go now the sport will be worse off for it.
“(Cycling) won’t disintegrate but it won’t have the profile it has enjoyed now. This day was always going to happen because the sport is so backward in some ways, the people that run it. It’s not corrupt but it’s so backward. There’s no money in the sport.
“Sky brought money but I’m talking about sponsors in general aside from Sky. Rather than be grateful for a company like Sky people just hammered it.”
Wiggins defended Sky's reputation for pushing the rules to their limit in the pursuit of victory, noting the amount of money they invested.
He explained: “The amount of money they’ve put in over the last 10 years … is incredible, and the timing of that with the generation of cyclists and what Dave wanted to do, we may never ever see it again.
“I can’t envisage them getting a sponsor like Sky - a UK company, wherever it’s owned these days but based in London - the size of the company coming and doing that for cycling. To replace them to carry on and cover the wage bill and the budget will be a tough thing to do...
“It’s the end of an era in some ways. That’s not to say the team can’t carry on but it’s whether they can find a sponsor with that much money and that much weight to cover the wage bill so they can keep everyone there.”