CYCLING superstar Geraint Thomas says he hopes to have decided by March whether he will race on beyond this upcoming road racing season.
The Welsh 2018 Tour de France winner, who owns the St Tewdrics wedding venue near Chepstow, says he aims to retun full time to Wales from his Monte Carlo base when he concludes his stellar career, but hasn’t ruled out racing on, even though he will turn 37 this year.
Remarkably Thomas – a regular in his younger days at the old Abergavenny Festival of Cycling, who featured the Blorenger Tumble ride in his book ‘Mountains According to G’ – raced home third in last year’s Tour, after originally being selected in a supporting role for Ineos.
This year he is due to target the Giro d’Italia, where bad luck and injuries have cost him several times in the past, after the 2023 Tour route appeared unfavourable, although he could still race in the latter as well.
Originally, he had targeted a decision on his future for last month, but says he now needs more time to think about it.
Looking ahead while attending the Tour Down Under in Australia, Thomas said: “I’m not ruling out doing another year because I’m still enjoying it and let’s face it, it’s not a bad life is it?”
“Why end things prematurely if I’m still enjoying it and still prepared to do it? If I can keep making the sacrifices, why not?”
“The December deadline didn’t happen and I don’t really want to put a deadline on it.
“I would like to decide, say, by March. If it is my last season, I want to enjoy it and make the most of it. I also want to plan for the future. I need to sit down with my family and talk about it all. I certainly won’t be racing in 2026.
“How far back we go from that, I’m not so sure. Physically everyone can race on. It’s if you lose the love for it or the pull of your family. It that’s greater, you stop. It’s an individual decision.”
“The team is keen for me to continue and would like me to. I wouldn’t really go anywhere else,” added Thomas, who has raced for the team since 2010, dating back to when it was Team Sky.
“I’m already speaking to [team manager] Rod Ellingworth. It depends on how they see my role, the salary and what’s expected of me. As long as all those boxes are ticked for me and the team, I don’t see why it won’t happen.”
“You’re lucky to retire on your own terms as a sportsperson. That’d be great,” he added. “I’ve said I want to do an Ironman triathlon. Other than that I don’t really know. One of the biggest reasons to end my career is because I want to spend more time at home with my family. We want to send my son to school in Wales and that counts.
“I’d like to stay in the sport in some capacity because that’s what I love and know. I don’t want to travel as much and be away from home as much. But I want to do lots of different things so I don’t get bored.”
Sadly, his start to the year was interrupted by an infection Down Under last week, stopping him racing in the opening Criterium and then restricting him to a domestique role in the five-stage tour.
Thomas said: “It sucks, when it’s nice and sunny in Australia and you’re sat inside.”