Geraint Thomas MBE, is the Welsh Pro rider who has been described as Chris Froome's super domestic in this year's Tour de France.
Along with Richie Porte they have provided Froome with incredible pace setting, protection in the mountains and managed to fend off attacks from Froome's main rivals to make sure his yellow jersey is defended. By riding so well Thomas has found himself in 4th position in the GC, and with 2 more stages in the mountains there is a distinct possibility he could find himself on the podium in Paris.
At 29 Geraint isn't new to the sport, but his committed part in Team Sky this year has thrown him into the spotlight as one of the best future British riders.
He started riding on the track as a Junior as part of Maindy Flyers in Birchgrove, Cardiff. He competed across the country as a Junior, and moved up to Manchester to be a part of the Under 23 Olympic Academy. He started to compete for GB in World Cups and won a Bronze medal in the points race at the 2006 Commonwealth Games.
In 2007 he turned professional signing up with Barloworld. He also competed in his first Tour de France this year, which he describes
‘It was by far the hardest thing I have ever done. I have never suffered as much as I did in those 3 weeks. Every night I would think, there’s no way I can go through that again tomorrow. But as soon as you get on the bike the next day, I didn’t want to stop. Completing the tour gave me so much mentally as well as physically’.http://www.geraintthomas.com
In 2008 he was part of Team GB at the Beijing Olympics, and won Gold in the team pursuit. During the next 4 years success in both his track and road cycling went hand in hand. He won the National road race in 2010, as well as continuing to win various medals at Track World Cups. In 2012 he decided to concentrate fully on the Track for the London Olympics, missing some of his favourite Spring Classics and the Tour de France. It was well worth the sacrifice as he went on to win another Gold medal in the Mens Team Pursuit.
Over the last 3 years Thomas has been an integral part of Team Sky, and has developed his role within the team every year. Sky describe him as 'a rider who has only scratched the surface of his potential'.
This year he has won the Tour of the Algarve, was 2nd in the Tour de Suisse, and finished 5th in the Paris-Nice. This shift in performance has been acredited to his decision to fully commit to just the road for 2015 onwards.
He describes himself as a 'diesel', someone who isn't explosive on the bike, but who is consistent and strong and can maintain a very high level of work over a long period. With Richie Porte leaving Team Sky at the end of the year, Geraint will be second in command at Team Sky. His performance in this year's tour definitely ear marks him as a future GC contender, and one of the best British riders this country has known.
Good luck today @GeraintThomas86