Geraint Thomas has moved up to sixth at the Criterium du Dauphine, just 14 seconds off the lead after his thrilling stage win. Pic: David Stockman/BELGA MAG/AFP via Getty Images

Geraint Thomas Stuns His Rivals With Sneak Attack To Catapult Back Into Criterium Contention

By Ian Gordon

Geraint Thomas admitted his thrilling solo attack on the Criterium du Dauphine was not pre-planned as he left his rivals stunned.

The 2018 Tour de France champ launched himself into a tight right-hand turn with just over 1km left on stage five.

Thomas then held off the chasing pack led by Sonny Colbrelli of Bahrain Victorious to bag his first win on French soil since that Tour triumph.

Geraint Thomas celebrates victory after his surprise attack with 1km left on stage five. Pic: Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images

“It wasn’t planned,” admitted Thomas, who atoned for a disappointing showing in the stage four time trial when he admitted he rode the first part of the course too hard.

“I knew Bahrain didn’t have any guys left. I knew the last bit was a bit twisty so I just thought ‘sod it, just go for it’.

“I went with 1km to go, the boys said on the radio I had a gap, so I just went all in.

“To be honest I didn’t think I had that on the line. I just sat up two metres before to start to give it the big ‘boom’ [celebration]. Colbrelli came so fast he nearly took my arm off, but it’s really nice to get that win.”

Geraint Thomas admitted his attack was not pre-planed as he holds off his rivals to win the stage by a wheel in France. Pic: Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images

With the 10 seconds time bonus time bonus, Thomas has moved into sixth place overall, 14 seconds off the race lead with three mountain stages left.

He added: “I was definitely disappointed in yesterday (ITT). It was a combination of not great legs but also riding it badly and dying in the second half completely where you need to be strongest.

“It’s nice to bounce back.”


1. Geraint Thomas (GB) Ineos Grenadiers, in 4-02-15
2. Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious
3. Alex Aranburu (Esp) Astana-Premier Tech
4. Carlos Barbero (Esp) Qhubeka-Assos
5. Mads Würtz Schmidt (Den) Israel Start-Up Nation
6. Michael Valgren (Den) EF Education-Nippo
7. Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
8. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar
9. Harry Sweeny (Aus) Lotto-Soudal
10. Franck Bonnamour (Fra) B&B Hotels p/b KTM, all at same time


1. Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe, in 16-59-22
2. Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana-Premier Tech, at 1s
3. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck – Quick-Step, at 6s
4. Ion Izagirre (Esp) Astana-Premier Tech, at 9s
5. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 13s
6. Geraint Thomas (GB) Ineos Grenadiers, at 14s
7. Ilan Van Wilder (Bel) Team DSM, at same time
8. Richie Porte (Aus) Ineos Grenadiers, at 16s
9. Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 32s
10. Ben O’Connor (Aus) Ag2r-Citroën, at 34s



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