CW's British performances of 2011: No. 10
Geraint Thomas Tour of Flanders 2011
Number 10: Geraint Thomas as the Tour of Flanders
Geraint Thomas will win the Tour of Flanders one day. If you want evidence to back up that prediction, take a look at the way he rode this year's race.
The Welshman finished 10th but he was in the front group at the death, contesting the win. And he had done a lot of team work to support Sky's leader, Juan Antonio Flecha, in the final phase of the race.
Thomas was in superb company. The leaders were Nick Nuyens, the eventual winner, Sylvain Chavanel, Fabian Cancellara, Tom Boonen, Philippe Gilbert, George Hincapie and Alessandro Ballan plus Langeveld, Leukemans and Scheirlinckx, who are specialists at the cobbled Classics.
Thomas looked like he belonged there. He even had a dig or two at the front, although he was clearly playing the support role for Flecha.
That was the obvious tactic for Sky. Flecha is experienced at pulling out results that deep into a Classic, for Thomas it was a relatively new experience.
But next time he finds himself in that position, he should be given the licence to ride for himself.