Unfortunately for Geraint Thomas, Tao Geoghegan Hart, and Simon Yates, the Tour de France did not go as planned.
Perhaps a Medal in The Olympics can Erase the Memory of Failure.
A crash-plagued Tour ended Thomas’s, A. Yates’, and Geoghegan Hart’s chances of winning the yellow jersey or a stage. With the addition of A. Yates, though, Team GB now has a formidable foursome that, in the opinion of performance director Stephen Park, has a good shot at winning a medal in the men’s Olympic road race on Saturday in Tokyo.
Park told VeloNews this week, “I think that we’ve got a very good chance of medaling.” On their best days, all four riders have proven they can compete and win with the greatest in the world.
“I see no reason why we shouldn’t be contending for the podium if on the day they’re feeling good and it works well for us.”
This formidable quartet includes three grand tour champions in Thomas, Geoghegan Hart, and Simon Yates, as well as the rising star of the stage races, A. Yates.
Thomas dislocated his shoulder in a nasty fall on stage 3 of the grand tour, and Simon Yates abandoned with abdominal wall injuries following a gravel-covered incident on stage 13. Although he finished the Giro d’Italia, Geoghegan Hart was not as dominant as he once was and lost time early on.
Park, Paradoxically, Thinks The Trio’s Terrifying Tour will Help Great Britain’s Chances in Tokyo.
A. Yates was able to get to Tokyo sooner than expected, so he and his brother Adam could get a head start on their preparations. Both Geoghegan Hart and Thomas were relieved of their leadership responsibilities, giving Thomas time to regroup and retake the lead in the second half of the race.
Park stated in a call before leaving for Tokyo, “The Tour didn’t go great for them, but the attitude is better, more positive than you would think.”
“Geraint and Tao went down in the first week, putting them out of the race early, but they were able to ride themselves back into form for the finish. You might make the case that the training they’ve provided over the past few weeks has been quite good.
A larger fall was sustained by Simon, although he has been in Tokyo for some time and is receiving excellent care from the local medical staff. Sounds like he’ll be fully recovered in time for the road race.