British success at the London Olympics is "driving the French mad", David Cameron has said.

Team GB currently sits third in the medal table with 22 golds, 13 silvers and 13 bronzes. By contrast France is in a distant seventh with 8 golds, 9 silvers and 11 bronze medals.

The French got off to a better start than the British, and president Francois Hollande took that opportunity to take a dig at the prime minister.

"The British have rolled out a red carpet for French athletes to win medals," he said last month. "I thank them very much for that."

However since then Team GB has rocketed up the medal table, taking a few French scalps along the way.

"It's driving the French mad, they can't bare it," Cameron said. "I did an interview with French TV and they virtually accused us of cheating."

"I think they found the Union Jacks on the Champs-Élysées a bit hard to take," he told BBC Radio 2's Chris Evans Breakfast Show on Thursday morning.

"I think there is nothing strange about this. They are just very hard working, very good, very talented.

He added: "I know it is difficult, France being such a great cycling nation, but we have done very well.

"If France did well in the cycling I would say well done and I am sure French people will feel the same."

Asked if there was a "secret" element, he quipped back: "The French should know the secret because you make the wheels of our bicycles."

Last month hordes of British cycling fans flocked to Paris to watch Bradley Wiggins achieve a stunning victory in the Tour de France.

Of particular irritation to the French appears to be the roaring success of the British cycling team, with Jason Kenny beating world champion, Frenchman Grégory Baugé, in the men’s sprint.

A poll for French sports magazine L'Equipe asked: "Do you think the performance of British cyclists at the London Games has been tainted by cheating."

Of those that responded 70% said 'Yes' and only 24% said 'No', the rest were undecided.

Such is the French suspicion of Team GB's success in velodrome that Isabelle Gautheron, the French team director, questioned whether the British had 'magic' wheels.

“We are asking a lot of questions: how have they gained so many tenths of seconds?” she said. "We are looking a lot at the kit they use. They hide their wheels a lot. The ones for the bikes they race on are put in wheel covers at the finish."

However six-time Olympic gold medal winner Sir Chris Hoy said Britain had done so well because of the work they had put in.

"If other teams want to progress they should look in the mirror and think about what they are doing wrong," he said.

Dave Brailsford, Team GB's cycling performance director, poked fun at a French TV interviewer by revealing that his cyclists had “specially round wheels”.

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