The Welshman says things couldn't have gone better for his team and Chris Froome, as the race prepares to head into the mountains

Geraint Thomas hailed a “perfect” first week for Team Sky at the Tour de France, as Chris Froome safely held onto the yellow jersey as the race prepares to enter the Pyrenees.

Although the team was beaten to the win in Sunday’s team time trial by BMC by just one second, Froome gained more time to put a buffer between himself and his rivals, as well gain a psychological advantage before the race heads to the mountains.

“Taking the week as a whole it’s perfect,” said Thomas after stage nine. “Every day we were the ones gaining time — [it’s] perfect for Froomey he’s in great shape, and looking forward to next week now.”

>>> ‘It’s not for me to attack,’ says Chris Froome as Tour heads for mountains

The Welshman has acted as Froome’s right-hand man so far in the race. He said the 2013 winner wanted to make a statement with their riding in the first week.

“Froomey just had a bit of a point to prove really, to prove all those people wrong and I think he showed that he can ride really well at the front and out of trouble when he wants,” he said.

“He nearly crashed a few times, but that’s the way it goes in racing — everyone’s like that — it’s just he got caught on camera nearly crashing.

“He was extra motivated I think to prove people wrong and he’s certainly done that.”

As well as Froome in yellow, Thomas is also sitting eighth in the overall classification, which he put down to a strong morale among Sky.

“I think we’re riding really well as a team, I think a lot of that comes down to all being in a similar mindset, really understanding each other, speaking English really well — it sounds stupid but a lot of teams there is that language barrier, so that’s been good.

“Hopefully if we can keep riding like we are, and as long as Froomey’s good that’s all that matters really. We can all be rubbish and as long as he’s good and he wins, it’s fine.”

The Tour resumes after Monday’s rest day, with stage 10 going 167km from Tarbes to the first summit finish of the race at La Pierre-Saint-Martin.

Tour de France 2015 stage nine highlights