British Cycling’s Geraint Thomas has topped off a fantastic 2018 by being crowned as the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
The 32-year-old professional cyclist saw off the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Harry Kane to win the prestigious award in front of a packed audience in Birmingham on Sunday evening.
As a two-time Olympic champion on the track, Thomas consolidated his impressive accomplishments in July this year by becoming the first Welshman to win the Tour de France.
Thomas becomes the fifth cyclist in history to win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, with Tommy Simpson (1965), Sir Chris Hoy (2008), Mark Cavendish (2011) and Sir Bradley Wiggins (2012) having also won the accolade since the awards began.
Anne Adams King, Chief Executive Officer for Welsh Cycling said:
“Geraint has been truly inspirational, starting at a grass roots level at local Cardiff club Maindy Flyers at the age of 10 and progressing through a Welsh Cycling pathway programme into British Cycling, he has never forgotten his roots and has always looked to inspire a younger generation alongside his own career.
“We are so pleased for Geraint. An excellent achievement we are very proud of.”
Darren Tudor, Head Coach Welsh Cycling said “Geraint was part of the Welsh Junior programme for 3 years before transferring to the British Cycling Academy. He was easy to work with and offered everything a coach wants from an athlete”.
“When we work with Juniors, we’re always aspiring for them to move onto the next level in their career and we’re constantly looking to give them the right skills and education, Geraint’s discipline and work ethic was completely in tune with what we needed him to achieve as a Junior”.
“It was evident to me as his coach at the time that even in those early stages, his demeanour was very much like others who have become world class athletes and already had an edge to his performance and goals. He had a really supportive background, both his parents were an absolute pleasure to work with and really just wanted G to do the best he could without being demanding”.
“On behalf of everyone at Welsh Cycling, Congratulations Geraint on such a cracking year.”