Geraint Thomas on Grand Tour leadership: 'It’s something I still want to give another go'

Team Sky's Geraint Thomas says that leading a Grand Tour team remains his primary objective.

Geraint Thomas at the 2017 Giro d'Italia (Sunada)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Geraint Thomas has confirmed that he still wants to ride a Grand Tour for Team Sky as leader, and that he hopes his mishaps in 2016 are behind him for good.

The Welshman was Sky’s co-leader at the Giro d’Italia alongside Mikel Landa, but a now infamous crash involving a police motorbike on stage nine put paid to both riders’ general classification hopes, with Thomas abandoning on stage 12.

He recovered to ride in support of Chris Froome at the Tour de France and won the opening prologue to take his maiden yellow jersey, but another crash on stage nine forced him out of the race.

Back racing at the Tour of Britain this week, Thomas is still eyeing leadership duties at a three-week race. “It’s something I still want to give another go,” he said.

“I feel like I am getting better each year and hopefully this year has got all the bad luck out of the way!

“I take a lot of confidence out of the fitness I had before the Giro – I was doing the best numbers I’d ever done and that gives you confidence in training.

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“We’ll have to look at the race routes [for the Giro, Tour and Vuelta a España] before we decide what my race programme is going to be. But I’m already excited for next year.”

Thomas headlines Sky’s six-man team at the Tour of Britain, but he is mostly working on behalf of sprinter Elia Viviani, as well as regaining his race form ahead of the World Championships, where he has backed Ben Swift, Pete Kennaugh or Ian Stannard to potentially win.

There is a 10-mile time trial in Clacton-on-Sea in the Tour of Britain on Thursday, but Thomas has dismissed his own prospects against a field including the last two world champions in the discipline: Katusha-Alpecin’s Tony Martin and Sky’s Vasil Kiryienka.

“If I do good, that’s good, but there’s no real pressure,” he said. “I will get stuck in, and will go as quick as I can, but I won’t be good enough to win it, I have to be realistic.

“I’m still finding my legs. Riding at 300-400 watts is fine, but when it comes to the leadouts I’m struggling with that top end. It’s just nice to be back racing, and especially on home roads.”

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Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.

Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.