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Page last updated at 09:05 GMT, Thursday, 28 August 2008 10:05 UK

Thomas eyes Tour de France return

Geraint Thomas
Geraint Thomas is keen for another Tour de France chance

Cycling star Geraint Thomas hopes to emulate his Olympic heroics on the road in next year's Tour de France.

The 22-year-old Welshman struck Olympic gold in Beijing as his British pursuit team broke the world record to secure sporting immortality.

Now Thomas is determined to transfer his Olympic form to the road.

"I just want to focus on the road now, take it as far as I can and it's always good suffering up a mountain for a couple of hours!" Thomas told the BBC.

Thomas enjoyed the honour of being the youngest rider at the 2007 Tour de France as he became the first Welshman for 40 years to compete in the prestigious cycling marathon.

The double World track champion finished 140th in Le Tour for the Barloword team but Thomas missed this year's event as he prepared with his Team GB colleagues for the Beijing Olympics.

Barloworld, however, have announced they are to withdraw their sponsorship from the team after rider Moises Duenas Nevado tested positive for banned substance EPO during this year's Tour.

But discussions are underway with replacement headline sponsors so the team could well continue in its present form under a new banner.

"Barloworld are definitely staying until the end of the year," said Thomas.

"They've got a big meeting in London the day before the Tour of Britain, which starts in two weeks.

"That's where it'll all get finalised and we'll know where we stand."

British cycling dominates the 2008 Olympics as they won eight golds in their 14 total medal haul in China as Thomas and fellow Welsh rider Nicole Cooke helped inspire the gold rush.

"A lot of people were surprised," said Thomas.

"But we knew what we were going there for, we were confident and it wasn't really a shock to come away with a shed-load of medals."

"I'm back into training now, just enjoying riding my bike and I've got a few more races to do."

see also
Davies completes Welsh medal haul
21 Aug 08 |  Olympics
GB storm to gold in team pursuit
18 Aug 08 |  Cycling
Sponsor quits after Tour doping
19 Jul 08 |  Cycling
Thomas wants Nevado to be jailed
22 Jul 08 |  Cycling
Exhausted Thomas proud to finish
29 Jul 07 |  Cycling

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