Report: Rebecca Ransom
The voting lines have opened for the 2012 BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality of the Year Awards. This year sees cyclist Geraint Thomas MBE and para-cyclist Mark Colbourne shortlisted for the prestigious title. The extended shortlist of 10 nominees displays the outstanding achievements of Welsh sports men and women in 2012.
2012 Highlights: Geraint Thomas MBE
In 2012, Geraint Thomas sacrificed his season on the road with Team Sky to commit himself to defend his Team Pursuit title for Great Britain at the Olympic Games in London.
The road to 2012 began at the close of the 2011 road season, where Thomas immediately began training on the track in Manchester with the Team Pursuit squad. The first major goal for the team came in April 2012, the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Melbourne, Australia. Thomas, alongside his team mates Ed Clancy, Steven Burke and Peter Kennaugh clinched the world title in a record breaking time of 3:53.295
GB Team Pursuit in the qualification round of the Olympics
In August 2012, the pressure was on to defend their Olympic title. After breaking their own world record in the qualification round, they met rivals Australia in the final. A repeat of the world championships earlier in the year, Great Britain stormed to victory and set another world record with a time of 3:51.659.
Geraint Thomas collected his second Olympic medal, adding to his gold from Beijing 2008, to become only the fourth Welshman in history to win multiple gold medals at the Olympic Games.
“It's been an amazing year, not just for me but Welsh and British sport as a whole. After such an amazing year, to be announced in the short list for BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality of the Year is the icing on the cake.
We don't train every day in the cold and wet, up and down mountains with the sports personality award on our minds, but it's nice to get the recognition.
The stand out moment of my year was of course the Olympics, but the support we received on the road and in the velodrome was unforgettable!”
As a junior cyclist, Geraint was awarded the Carwyn James Junior Award at the 2004 BBC Wales Sports Personality of the Year. In the same year he won the Junior World Road Championships and Junior Paris-Roubaix. In 2007 he became the first Welshman in 40 years to ride the Tour de France, and was the youngest rider of that tour. He has since developed as a professional cyclist, wearing the White jersey in the early stages of the 2011 Tour de France and as part of the 2011 Great Britain cycling team where Mark Cavendish became World Champion. Geraint Thomas will return to the road for the 2013 season with greater ambitions for success with Team Sky.
If you wish to support Geraint Thomas' nomination for BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality of the Year, please visit bbc.co.uk/sportwales for information on how to vote.