Tour de France 2018: Geraint Thomas rides toward triumph in Paris

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Tour de France victor Great Britain's Geraint Thomas (L) wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey and classification third-placed Great Britain's Christopher Froome (R) cross the fisnish line of 21st and last stage of the 105th edition of the Tour de France cycling race between Houilles and Paris Champs-Elysees, on July 29, 2018.

However, Welshman Thomas grasped control of the race during the mountain stages in the Alps and controlled his lead ever since, holding off a sustained challenge from Tom Dumoulin.

Eurosport is the home of the Tour de France.

For Thomas it is the realisation of years of hard work, developing from Olympic champion on the track to a stage racer on the road, winning Paris-Nice in 2016 and then the Dauhpiné in June, always an indicator of strength in July.

Froome's failure to beat Thomas also showed how hard it is to complete a Giro-Tour double, with Marco Pantani being the last man to achieve the feat in 1998 during the doping-tainted era. I think it's going to take a while to sink in.

Growing up on the outskirts of Cardiff, he started cycling seriously at the age of 10 and was noticed around three years later by Rod Ellingworth, performance director at Team Sky.

"I only have respect for him".

"I was on such a high and I had goosebumps coming on to the Champs Elysees".

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Chris Froome was proud of Geraint Thomas' Tour de France win, but he has no intention of stepping back as he plans to extend his period of dominance. The Dutchman has now won six TT's overall at the three Grand Tours - the Tour, the Giro d'Italia and the Spanish Vuelta - and he is also the time trial world champion.

On the contrary, many Australians will feel happy for Thomas, who is well known to the domestic Australian cycling scene. "I can't believe it", he told reporters today.

Thomas first rode in the Tour in 2007, when he was 140th of the 141 finishers.

It says enough that Thomas was slightly bewildered by the prospect of being labelled Wales' biggest sportsman when it was put to him.

But just like many riders before him -- such as five-time champions Jacques Anquetil or his compatriot Bradley Wiggins -- Thomas gradually shed weight in order to follow the best in the mountains and his progression has been steady, making it little surprise that he paraded with the yellow jersey on his shoulders on the Champs Elysees on Sunday. Also, he will make it Sky's sixth victory in the last seven years.

A gracious Froome said of his compatriot: "It's a dream to finish on the podium with Geraint". "When he was with me full-time, we lived in Manchester or in Italy".

"I really appreciate all the support - it's been a tough Tour at times but the support has outshone any negativity and that means a lot to all of us".

White jersey - Pierre Latour (AG2R-La Mondiale)Pierre Latour rode in the break on stage 16 protecting his lead in the best young rider competition.

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