Dave Brailsford proud of Geraint Thomas' BBC Wales award

Geraint Thomas impressed for Team Sky during the 2014 Tour de France
Geraint Thomas impressed for Team Sky during the 2014 Tour de France

Team Sky cycling boss Dave Brailsford says he feels immense pride at Geraint Thomas being voted the BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality 2014.

Thomas, 28, has enjoyed a fine season, recording his highest Tour de France finish and then winning gold and bronze medals at the Commonwealth Games.

Brailsford was raised in Wales, so Thomas' success has extra resonance.

"He does deserve it and his ride at the Commonwealth Games I think captured everyone's imagination," he said.

Brailsford added: "It means an awful lot. I grew up in Wales and it's my favourite place... so the Wales Sports Personality of the Year I keep an eye on.

"It's massively satisfying that a young cyclist, who's come up through the ranks of British cycling whilst I've been there... has gone on to get his just rewards.

"He does deserve it and his ride at the Commonwealth Games I think captured everyone's imagination.

Team Sky cycling boss Dave Brailsford
"If someone needs to take control of a situation, commit for the team, Geraint Thomas is there before you know it."

"I'm sure that the Welsh nation were very, very proud of him when he won that road race.

"It was a brilliant performance by a brilliant rider, you just get a feeling of pride."

Brailsford, as Team Sky principal and former Great Britain performance director, has seen Thomas come up through the ranks.

Thomas first starred as a track cyclist, winning gold medals at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics as part of the Great Britain team pursuit quartet, but has also gone on to impress on the road.

He was the only British rider to finish this year's Tour and was 22nd overall, 59 minutes 14 seconds behind race winner Vincenzo Nibali.

Thomas joined Team Sky when the Britain-based outfit were formed in 2010, then signed a two-year contract extension in July 2014.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Sir Bradley Wiggins presents Geraint Thomas with the BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality 2014 award

Brailsford admits that there was interest from other teams, but believes that in the end it was a relatively simple choice for Thomas.

"I don't think we had to fight hard and ultimately he knows if he continues to work here with the team... we believe in him and we can get him to where he wants to be," said Brailsford, who was born in Derbyshire but was brought up in Deiniolen, near Caernarfon in Gwynedd, Wales.

"He's ambitious... and he's very, very talented. He's probably too talented in an ironic way because he can do so many things. He's got a lot of breadth.

"Some people are good at climbing, some people are good time trialists, some people are good sprinters, some people are good at medium mountains, some people can't ride cobbles.

"But he can pretty much do all of those things and he's a brilliant team player. Instinctively... if someone needs to take control of a situation, commit for the team, he's there before you know it."

Top Stories