Geraint Thomas returned to racing yesterday at the Giro del Trentino as he nurses himself back to race fitness in time for the Giro d’Italia.

The Barloworld rider has not raced since crashing out of the Tirreno-Adriatico in March and breaking his pelvis, but believes he’ll be fit enough to start the Giro on May ninth.

“It’s not too bad but it takes a bit of time to get back in to the rhythm of racing,” he said after the second stage of Trentino. “The muscles in my right leg get a bit tired when I’m riding out of the saddle, but apart from that it’s fine and it’s getting better and better every day.”

Thomas had 38 days away from racing after the crash that saw him sustain quite severe injuries, and admitted that all he is doing this week is easing himself back in to it. “It’s just about survival and getting round. I’m on the phone to the physios and they’re giving me stretches and exercises to do, I’ll be doing them right up to the Giro.”

Thursday’s stage, that finished at the top of the Alpe di Pampeago, was won by Przemyslaw Niemiec of the Miche-Silver Cross-Selle Italia team. Thomas finished 14 minutes down in a small group of six. “I was in the group until about 10 kilometres to go then the road narrowed and they just accelerated out of it. So I just rode to the finish with a couple of other guys.”

“I was a bit nervous, it was more on the descents, I was taking it really cautiously, I can’t afford to have another crash now.”

“I sprained my wrist quite badly and today I had to slam on the brakes and it pulled it a bit. I’m fine when climbing as I’m sitting on the tops , it’s just braking and descending.”

Tomorrow’s stage is 165 km from Tesero to Innervillgraten in Austria.

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