Cycling is not just Geraint Thomas’ profession, it is his passion
Geraint Thomas, born May 1986 has come a long way from riding at Maindy Flyers club in Cardiff.
Thomas began cycling with the Maindy Flyers Cycling Club in his birth town Cardiff at the age of 10. Little did he know at the time he was riding with his future Sky teammate Luke Rowe.
Thomas immediately showed talent and by the age of 14, he was under the watchful eye of many British national coaches. By 17, he was one of the most accomplished junior racers in the country’s history. He joined Team GB and trained under the tutelage of Ellingworth.
“You could see from the beginning that he had high mental capacity on him. He was different than the others,” Ellingworth said. “Some lads you have to teach them all of these off-the-bike skills to prepare them mentally. Geraint was really good at it.”
By that age, Thomas’s personal affinity for the sport helped him overcome some of the pitfalls that often derail young athletes.
Thomas’s early career revolved around track cycling, where victory is often decided by a bobble or momentary lapse in concentration. Stress and nervousness courses through young track athletes, due to the sport’s emphasis on perfection.
Geraint Thomas’ career has featured Olympic, world, and Commonwealth golds. Today, he is just days away from a peak as high as Stage 17’s 2215m finish line. Winning the Tour de France, will be an accolade that would make him the third British victor over the past six years – and it is all down to his attitude.
As Velonews reported; Thomas says the balance is by design. A life outside of cycling helps him maintain a relaxed, even-keeled attitude at the races. It gives him the perspective he needs to understand and appreciate his place within the universe.
“He can turn the cycling world off,” Sara Thomas, his wife says. “He can come home and not talk about cycling all night. He can switch back and forth.”
Sara Thomas believes the roots of her husband’s dual lives come from his parents, who encouraged Thomas in cycling but maintained a hands-off approach to their son’s progression in the sport.
“His parents never pushed him with his cycling. It was like, ‘Do your best, it doesn’t matter if you win or lose,’” Sara Thomas says. “He kept on with the sport because he enjoyed it, not because there were people pushing him.”
“I don’t get too stressed most of the time. Obviously, I really want to win but at the same time, it’s just a bike race,” Thomas said. “It’s not the be-all and end-all. It’s not like we’re going to Afghanistan or something. That is real-life stuff. We’re just really privileged to be in the position we’re in.”
Geraint Thomas sealed his first Tour de France victory on Sunday as he crossed the finish line in Paris.
“It’s unbelievable it’s going to take a while to sink in,” said Thomas.
“Normally that stage is really hard but today I just seemed to float around it. I had goose bumps going around there. The support from the Welsh, British flags. … To ride around wearing this (yellow jersey) is a dream.”