Thomas relishes ‘new lease of life’ after Tour snub
Geraint Thomas says he is “not trying to prove anything to anyone” as he prepares to ride in the World Time Trial Championships in Italy today. The Welshman added that his controversial exclusion from Ineos’s Tour de France squad had given him a “new lease of life”.
Thomas, 34, was a surprise omission from an eight-man Tour team after struggling in the warm-up races. The British squad went on to have a disappointing race, with leader and defending champion Egan Bernal abandoning in the final week. Some pundits, notably Sir Bradley Wiggins, claimed Thomas’s presence would have “changed the whole dynamic of the team”.
But Thomas, speaking ahead of today’s 32kilometre time trial in Imola, refused to criticise Ineos principal Sir Dave Brailsford, insisting the decision was a joint one and adding that it had given him “newfound impetus”, with his sights now firmly set on the Giro d’Italia which begins in Sicily a week tomorrow.
“It’s not about proving anything to anyone,” he said. “It [the Tour] was a decision that Dave and myself made together after the Criterium du Dauphine. It actually gave me a new lease of life. I was over [the Tour] pretty quickly. The initial disappointment was more that it was the first real time I’d not hit my target for the year. I knew I wasn’t in the shape to challenge for the win, that was the disappointing thing.
“But I could have an easy week, go back to Cardiff and see my son and switch off for a few days and then build up to the Giro. As soon as I was in Monaco and starting the whole Giro project, I was motivated. It gave me a new impetus.”
Thomas has since finished runner-up to fellow Briton Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) at Tirreno-Adriatico a couple of weeks ago.