Friday, 20 July, 2018

Briton Thomas takes Dauphine lead as Ireland's Martin wins stage

Briton Thomas takes Dauphine lead as Ireland's Martin wins stage Briton Thomas takes Dauphine lead as Ireland's Martin wins stage
Kristopher Love | 13 June, 2018, 19:42

Thomas was clearly the strongest rider in the field, moving up into the top five after Sky won the team time trial, and then remaining consistent in the mountains.

"It's incredible, it hasn't sunk in yet", Thomas said of the victory.

The 32-year-old Thomas registered his first win at the Dauphine, probably the greatest success of his professional career, topping even his Paris-Nice victory in 2016.

"I was always thinking of the next stage, the next climb and it's an unbelievable feeling [to win] and I think it will really start to sink in tonight".

"Ive been feeling good all year", the Irishman said after the race.

"When we finally got back, after a bit of a chase, a few of the guys - (Adam) Yates, Dan Martin and (Bob) Jungels - said the same thing, that they saw it, that someone went on radio and they started sprinting", said Thomas.

The attacks has been pulled back during a fast start. This shot from race organiser ASO shows what it is like out on the road
The attacks has been pulled back during a fast start. This shot from race organiser ASO shows what it is like out on the road

He follows fellow former British winners Brian Robinson, Robert Millar, Sir Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome in to the history books.

The race is a good indicator of form heading into the Tour de France, which takes place from 7-29 July. I get to ride the races I want and I am a leader in majority. I just made that final move towards the end.

But it did give Thomas the chance to lead Team Sky.

French rider Romain Bardet took third in the overall standings.

Adam Yates was extremely happy to win the stage after a hard week of racing.

Yates attacked Romain Bardet (Ag2R-La Mondiale) and Thomas in the final 200m of the day's 136km stage, overtaking solo escapee Daniel Navarro in the closing metres to add to his family's burgeoning reputation. Pierre Rolland (FRA) Team EF Education First - +41 Drapac p/b Cannondale Overall leaders 1.