New Zealand’s Hayden Wilde displayed wonderful honesty in the aftermath of his first ever WTCS victory in Leeds on Saturday, admitting he was to blame for the accident which saw British stars Jonny Brownlee and Alex Yee crash out.
The Tokyo Mixed Relay gold medallists saw their hopes of delighting the huge home crowd scuppered in Roundhay Park when they both crashed early in the bike leg. It was later revealed that Brownlee had suffered a broken elbow in the crash.
Wilde would go on to pass long-time French leader Léo Bergere on the run to claim a famous victory, but he admitted that crash had taken a fair bit of the shine off his success.
Wilde admits blame
He told BBC One: “It’s a bitter sweet victory to be honest. As it’s my first victory I’m actually really stoked. But there was part of that collision which was probably my fault.
“I just really want to apologise to Jonny Brownlee and Alex Yee, and my team-mate (Dylan McCullough) who I actually collided into a little bit, on the uphill there was a lot of speed going through there and we just caught that momentum and the guys went down behind me.”
Wilde said he had been really looking forward to locking horns with Brownlee and Yee, after having a terrific battle with the latter in Yokohama recently. Just not like this.
Regret for Hayden
“I wanted to race those boys properly, not like that, I just feel real gutted to be honest. I know Jonny was pretty mad on the side, he gave me some words, that’s fair enough I’d do the same. Just absolutely gutted for those guys.
“Other than that, really happy how I ran today and how the race went. The swim went well, but just a little bit bitter sweet for me today.
“Honestly, it’s totally my fault, more than happy to own up to that. I just feel real bad for them, as you said it might be his (Jonny) last time here.”