Geraint Thomas confirms the race calendar before the Tour de France

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Geraint Thomas has confirmed his racing calendar as he prepares to race the Tour de France as part of a trio of management for the Ineos team.The Welshman spoke with a Welsh broadcaster S4C before his return to racing saying that he will only have eight days of racing before the Grand Départ of the Tour in Nice on August 29.

Thomas will resume his season on the Tour de l’Ain before heading to the Critérium du Dauphiné, a race he won in 2018.

“The team starts running on August 1, but for me there is a three-day stage race in France, one of the stages of which is the same as the Tour, so I’ll start there,” said he said S4C.

“Then I will have two days off and then we will do the Dauphiné, which is the last race before the Tour anyway. It’s shortened, it’s normally eight days but now it’s five. I will do some reconsiderations after that, then there will only be a week and then we will go to the Tour.

Thomas raced for the last time on the Volta ao Algarve which ended on February 23, where he finished 21st in the general classification.

As a precursor to the race, Thomas will also participate in the “Virtual Tour of France” on Zwift, a platform he knows after having worked three consecutive 12-hour shifts on the virtual training application to collect 375528 £ for NHS charities.

The 34-year-old said that while Zwift is not the same as racing, it has been a great tool to use during lockdown and that running virtual races are getting the most out of the competition.

“It’s not the real thing, but it’s very realistic. Zwift racing has certainly helped me get the most out of myself because you are racing against your teammates online. Even if you’re not ready to start, as soon as you start, that competitiveness comes out anyway and you all end up running tough, so it’s really good training, “said Thomas.

“I’ll probably be a bit like ‘oh whatever, we’ll see how it goes’, but as soon as you start, you make stupid attacks. But we’re just going to have a little fun with that, it’s definitely a good alternative to riding on your own.

Having had to suspend the race for five months due to the coronavirus pandemic, the time spent has helped Thomas put into perspective the importance of enjoying the race, especially since he is reaching the end of his career.

“I get along a bit now, maybe I have three, four, five years left, so I just want to take advantage of those years and race and enjoy my bike. It was difficult but there are many people who are in more disadvantaged positions than us.

Thomas and Ineos team leader Sir David Brailsford were both recently interviewed for S4C coverage of Team Ineos eRace and Ineos eRace classic, which will air at 9 p.m. this Friday and the following Friday respectively – it’s in Welsh, but English subtitles are available for those who do not know the Welsh language.

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