Geraint Thomas Wins Tour de France Title

France Cycling Tour de France

It's just a dream.

"It's going to take a while to sink in", Thomas said before draping the flag of Wales over his shoulders during the podium ceremony. "So you just block this out and do what you've got to do". I'm really glad to be able to take a break now. "Everything just clicked this race".

'To be actually around winning it is, you have to pinch yourself. "Now, he's being repaid for all the years of hard work and sacrifice he has made for the team".

He joined the fledgling Team Sky in 2010 and was given a freer rein in one-day races but has mainly been used as a domestique - a rider who sacrifices his own chances in the service of a team leader - for Froome in each of his four Tour victories, and before this year his best finish had been 15th, twice.

The Welshman only needed to cross the line in the closing 21st stage on the Champs Elysees and he managed that a few seconds after Norway's Alexander Kristoff had come out on top in a sprint finish.

Eurosport is the home of the Tour de France.

Dumoulin accused the stage victor of drafting behind a motorbike.

Tasmanian Richie Porte, one of the overall favourites, then crashed out for a second successive year on stage nine to Roubaix and before the first of 15 sectors of cobbles with a fractured collarbone. It could have been awkward with a bit of tension in the team, but there wasn't any at all. But this was surely the easiest stage of the lot: 116km of procession more than competition, neutralised by a traditional truce, from the Parisian suburb of Houilles to the Champs-Élysées.

However, even off the bike, "G" - as Thomas is affectionately known - has earned respect throughout the unforgiving world of pro cycling.

Thomas lives and trains in Monaco with his wife but often returns to Cardiff to socialize with friends and family.

And with every visit to Australia, the 33-year-old's popularity has risen.

The short, steep climb of the Mur-de-Bretagne was the first real test of form for the general classification riders, and Thomas did not falter as he finished ninth, picking up five seconds on Froome who lost the wheels at the end, and 50 seconds on Dumoulin who faded badly on the climb.

In Victoria, he raced in the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games, winning a points race bronze medal, while he is certainly "au fait" with Sydney's cycling milieu. In 2005, he suffered a ruptured spleen when he was struck by a piece of metal during a ride in Australia.

Geraint Thomas (far right) racing in Sydney back in 2006.

Described by his coaches as a dedicated professional with a healthy and a balanced lifestyle, Thomas had already showed vast skills on the road from winning the Paris-Roubaix junior race in 2004.

But the spotlight was firmly on Thomas, so long in the shadows of teammates past and present, Bradley Wiggins, the first British victor of the famous race in 2012, then Froome. "Since his junior years, he has always wanted to win".

"It's just been an unbelievable year and I've been riding the crest of a wave".

"I've not got a good track record with speeches so I'll keep it short", Thomas said on the podium. We really get behind anyone who is successful so it is really nice to have that.

"By the sounds of it, it's gone a bit insane back home", said Thomas, who broke down in tears during emotional scenes at the finish line, where he was surprised by his wife, Sara.

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