Velodrome to be named in honour of Geraint Thomas

17 August 2018, 12:05 | Updated: 17 August 2018, 12:10

Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas

It's going to be called the Geraint Thomas National Velodrome of Wales.

In July, Geraint became the first Welshman, and only the third UK rider, to win the world's most famous cycling road race, the Tour de France.

Next month he is heading to Newport as part of Team Sky in the Tour of Britain when the city hosts the final of the first stage on Sunday 2 September.

Councillor Debbie Wilcox, Leader of Newport City Council, said: "We want to show our appreciation of Geraint's awesome achievement. This is the glittering prize in an already stellar career in which Geraint has notched up a wealth of titles, including two Olympic golds on the Track.

"Geraint has been a regular visitor to the Wales National Velodrome since it opened in 2003 and has spoken of what it has meant to him, so it is entirely fitting that Newport bestows this honour on him."

The Velodrome is also home to Welsh Cycling, the National Governing Body for Cycling in Wales.

Chief Executive at Welsh Cycling, Anne Adams-King said: "Seeing Geraint as a Welsh Rider who has progressed from his club; through the talent pathway to joining one of the top professional cycling teams, is inspiring in itself - but watching him progress and go onto winning the most prestigious road race in the world, that's something truly special.

"The people of Wales have really been behind Geraint and his success hopefully proves to our clubs, riders, and even people who haven't begun cycling as yet; that absolutely anything is achievable when you work hard.

"Wales National Velodrome is a fantastic training facility offering opportunities for both beginners and current cyclists; and it's absolutely fantastic that the home of Welsh Cycling will now be honoured in Geraint's name."

Geraint Thomas said: "It's a huge honour for me to have the Velodrome renamed after me - I can't quite believe it if I'm honest!

"The Velodrome has played a pivotal part in my cycling story and continues to play such a key role in inspiring the next generation of cyclists in South Wales.

"It's a fantastic facility for riders of all ages and abilities to hone their talents.

"I would personally like to thank everyone who has played a part in this and look forward to seeing everyone for the grand opening."

Geraint Thomas has trained in the Wales National Velodrome since it opened in 2003 and took part in training camps with Team GB before the 2012 summer Olympics in London where he won his second Olympic gold and Team Wales ahead of the 2014 Commonwealth Games when he also picked up a medal.

He even had a session there with League of Their Own's John Bishop, Jamie Redknapp, Micky Flanagan and Jack Whitehall in 2012. Geraint Thomas track days also proved immensely popular.