The world of cycling has been paying tribute to Portal since the Team Ineos directeur sportif died suddenly at the age of 40, and Wiggins has added his respects to a friend and former colleague.
"I rode with Nico in the first year of Team Sky, I also roomed with him quite a bit that year in the early season races," Wiggins said on his Eurosport podcast.
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"You will never find someone who has a bad word to say about Nico, as a rider he was so well respected by the likes of [Alejandro] Valverde and those guys. He spoke Spanish, perfect French and perfect English.
"It doesn’t deserve to happen to anyone really, but the content of the personality and character is always brought in to it post death, whether they were a really nice person or not, as it were.
"First and foremost, his family, his kids, you have to think about it from their point of view. It was only weeks before that we were talking about the death of Kobe Bryant and the devastation that left behind really.
It’s hard for me to put it into words, personally I had a lot of affection for him.
"He was someone I spoke to just last year at the Tour, I had my son with me and he couldn’t believe how old Ben had got because the last time he saw him was at the 2012 Tour when we rode up the Champs-Elysees, and we were talking about his children.
"It’s just a sad moment, not necessarily for cycling, sod cycling, but for his family. First and foremost he was a great husband and father, so our thoughts have to go to them really."
Nicolas Portal and Bradley Wiggins with Team Sky
Image credit: Getty Images
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