Geraint relishes his Swiss role in taking Tour title

Monday 27th June 2022 11:00 am

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GERAINT Thomas produced one of his best performances since landing the 2018 Tour de France, becoming the first ever Briton to win the eight-day Tour of Switzerland on Sunday.

The 36-year-old Welshman, who owns the St Tewdrics House wedding venue near Chepstow, is hitting form just at the right time ahead of next month’s Tour de France.

And the delighted rider posted a picture of himself with the overall trophy after finishing second in the final time-trial, saying: “Don’t think many were expecting that. Delighted to finally win Tour de Suisse. Big thanks to the boys and the team for all of their work this week.”

Looking ahead to the Tour de France, he added: “I just want to go there and race hard and do what I can.

“We’ve got two other leaders on the team (Ineos Grenadiers). Whether I stay up on GC (general classification) for a while to play another card, go for stages, or help other guys… whatever. I’m happy to do whatever.

“I’ll take my chance for sure if it comes, I’ll help the boys if I have to.”

On winning in Switzerland, he added: “I was second back in 2015 and second in the TT but I lost that by about five seconds, so it’s super nice to win here.

“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, especially after that narrow loss but it’s really nice to win in such a big race, such a hard race.

“For sure it’s the hottest race I’ve done, consistently, so I’m super happy.

“I think especially with the heat you had to be conservative and not be too aggressive too quickly.”

On next month’s challenge, he added: “I think as a team we can [compete with Pogačar and Roglič in the Tour de France].

“Man v man is a different story, they’re super talented… but I think we’ve got a strong team… we’re all motivated and we’re going to give our best.”

Belgian Remco Evenepoel won stage eight in Vaduz in 28 minutes 26 seconds, with Thomas just three seconds back.

The result saw the Welshman overtake Columbian Sergio Higuita by more than a minute to grab the overall title.

It was Thomas’ first overall stage-race win for more than a year, the last being the Tour of Romandie in May 2021.

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