Bradley Wiggins smashes world hour cycling record

     Bradley Wiggins celebrates his new world hour record in front of a capacity crowd at the Olympic velodrome in London.

    (CNN)Bradley Wiggins added the world hour record to his impressive list of cycling achievements as he covered a distance of 54.526 kilometers (33.88 miles) at the Olympic velodrome in London Sunday.

    The former Tour de France winner smashed the previous best by fellow Briton Alex Dowsett of 52.937 km set in Manchester last month.
    The UCI Hour Record is considered one of the most grueling tests that can be attempted and the 35-year-old dug deep in the closing stages, cheered to the echo by a capacity crowd.
        The event had sold out in just seven minutes and those present witnessed a very special occasion as Wiggins completed over 218 laps of the 250-meter indoor track.

        Exhausting effort

        Despite the exhausting effort, Wiggins had enough energy to dismount his track bike and raise it high above his head in celebration.
          It was the fifth time the record has been broken in the last eight months since cycling's governing body relaxed the regulations to allow modern track pursuit bikes, but Wiggins' new mark has taken it to new levels.
          However, the four-time Olympic gold medalist admitted that it had been even tougher than expected.
          "It's the closest I'll ever come to knowing what it's like to have a baby, just torturous," he told Sky Sports.
          "When you are out there you never think it's going to come to an end," Wiggins added.
          As well as his adoring fans, also in attendance was Wiggins' childhood hero and former hour record-holder Miguel Indurain of Spain.
          "I always compare myself to the greats. I'm just glad to be in the company of those guys. Just to get up there and do that takes a lot of courage. It's tough," he said.
          Wiggins had even shaved off his beard ahead of the attempt, and his trademark sideburns which he so famously sported at the 2012 Olympics in London where he won road time trial gold were long gone.
          That success immediately followed his feat of becoming the first British rider to win the Tour de France and guaranteed his place in the sporting history books.
            Wiggins has said he will retire from competitive cycling after next year's Olympic Games in Rio where he will attempt to add to his gold medal tally in the team pursuit discipline on the track.