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Geraint Thomas is determined to make up for his Olympics experience in Rio four years ago at the Tokyo Games and has stressed that there are no egos in relation to leadership within the British team camp ahead of Saturday’s road race.

The four-man British team comprises of Thomas, Tao Geoghegan Hart, and Adam and Simon Yates but so far, the team have yet to decide on each rider’s role within the squad.

Thomas and Geoghegan Hart both completed the Tour de France with Simon Yates crashing out. His brother Adam has followed a different race programme and arrived in Tokyo before the Tour de France finished last Sunday.

“In Rio I was in the mix but crashed on the last descent and that was me out of it. Hopefully it’s third time lucky but I’m not thinking too far ahead. I’d love to put that right on Saturday but there’s so many factors that come into play, but we’ll do our best on the day,” Thomas told the media on Thursday.

The British team are far from favourites for Saturday’s race. Although three of their riders have won Grand Tours their one-day pedigree isn’t as strong as some of the other teams on the start line. The question of leadership is vital though, especially given the tough conditions the riders will face, and the fact that at least two riders will need to sacrifice their own needs for the good of the squad.

“It’s a strong team on paper, we all know the best way of doing it, but it all comes down to the day and how people are feeling with the heat and humidity. Myself and Tao have come out of the Tour, Simon crashed out and for Adam this has been on his radar for the last months,” Thomas added.

“It’s all slightly different prep but the main thing is that there are no egos and we just communicate, we have our plan and try and execute that well. With such small teams a lot can happen, so much can go wrong and so much can go right. “

Thomas comes into the Games on the back of a disappointing Tour de France. He crashed on stage 3, dislocating his shoulder, and although he finished the race he was unable to compete for either the overall standings or a stage win.

“The shoulder is fine, it’s more the legs. Someone went into me in the final week and I landed on my right side again, which didn’t help with the whole recovery process but I had a great team around me,” he said.

“I was able to go as easy as you can in the final three days of the Tour. Training and racing are completely different, but we’ll see how we go. I’m up for it and feeling alright.”

According to Thomas the men’s race will be a war of attrition for all concerned with the humidity, distance and heat all playing major factors. The parcours also suits the pure climbers.

“We’ve ridden the last two climbs and they’re tough. The heat and humidity will add to that, 230km and that last climb is a proper climb. It’s steep and challenging and you’ll have to ride it well to not blow up.

“It’ll be a war of attrition and people going out the back rather than big attacks. It’s not a lottery but you do need a bit of luck.”

SOURCE: CyclingNews   (go to source)
AUTHOR: Daniel Benson
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