“Kids … just dream big. People tell you it can’t be done, but you believe in yourself and you work hard, keep going … and anything is possible.” Geraint Thomas, Winner of the 2018 Tour de France
Wow, what a thrilling Tour! In three weeks filled with crashes and near crashes, with mountain climbs and torrid flats, Geraint Thomas never missed a beat. Calm, collected, totally focused, he just kept riding. And over and over, when interviewers asked him in mid-race if he was going to win, he never took the bait and predicted victory — he always said he was just taking it day by day.
Still, he stunned the cycling world by beating out the rest of the field. Once he put on the Tour’s yellow jersey a week or so into the race, he never surrendered it and wore it all the way to Paris. When he got there, he said, “I started cycling because of this race. I remember running home from school to watch it….”
“The dream was always just to be a part of it…. “That (dream) came true 11 years ago in 2007. Now, I’m here, in the yellow jersey, it’s just insane, it’s incredible – a dream come true…. “To now be riding round winning it is just incredible. It’s just a whirlwind. I seem to be floating around on cloud nine.”
Geraint is the first Welshman to win the Tour in its 105-year history. It didn’t come easily. In 2005, he had a terrible training accident. He fought back and in 2007, he began the first of his nine tours. For eight of them, he assumed the role of “lieutenant,” protecting teammates Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome. While they wore yellow and won, he sweated and supported them, always playing second fiddle. Then he seized his moment.
“You’re never late for a date with destiny,” my wonderful friend Linda D’Amico said to me a while ago. How true this! Geraint’s heartfelt advice given from the Paris podium can inspire the “kids” all of us:
“Just dream big,”
“Believe in yourself,”
“Anything is possible.”
What dynamite advice! Bravo, Geraint. Vive le Tour! Write on!