Thomas last rode in the Volta a Catalunya, but left the Spanish stage race early to prepare for Flanders. The 29-year-old Welshman already has two big wins under his belt this season, having won Paris-Nice and the Volta ao Algarve overall.
With more of a focus on stage racing rather than classics in 2016, the Tour of Flanders will be the only outing for Thomas in this year’s cobbled events.
Thomas finished Flanders in 14th spot last year, and will join a strong Sky line-up that includes E3 Harelbeke winner Michal Kwiatkowski, and British hopes Ian Stannard and Luke Rowe.
Sky’s Classics sports director Servais Knaven told Cycling Weekly last week that the team should field Thomas in Flanders: “His main goal is being in top shape for the Tour [de France], and being a good climber… In his position, if he wants to do Flanders, we’d be crazy not to take him.”
Michal Golas, Christian Knees, Gianni Moscon and Salvatore Puccio complete Sky’s line-up for Flanders.
Meanwhile, Sky has also confirmed its rosters for two Spanish races: the GP Miguel Indurain (Saturday, April 2) and Vuelta al Pais Vasco (April 4-9). Both line-ups feature Sky’s Colombian and Spanish riders, with a focus on climbing firepower.
Watch: Tour of Flanders 2016 essential guide
Mikel Landa will ride in both as he aims to build form for the Giro d’Italia in May. After a period of illness, Landa made his Sky debut at the Settimana Internazionale di Coppi e Bartoli in Italy last week. Irishman Philip Deignan and Belarusian time trial world champion Vasil Kiryienka are also selected for both races.
Team Sky rosters
Tour of Flanders
Michal Golas, Christian Knees, Michal Kwiatkowski, Gianni Moscon, Salvatore Puccio, Luke Rowe, Ian Stannard, Geraint Thomas
GP Miguel Indurain
Phil Deignan, Sebastian Henao, Sergio Henao, Vasil Kiryienka, Mikel Landa, David Lopez, Xabier Zandio
Vuelta al Pais Vasco
Phil Deignan, Sebastian Henao, Sergio Henao, Vasil Kiryienka, Mikel Landa, David Lopez, Lars Petter Nordhaug, Xabier Zandio