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"What motivates him is to do extraordinary things": Benjamin Thomas, an all-terrain runner

2022-08-13T12:45:27.285Z

At 26, Benjamin Thomas has just been crowned double European track cycling champion in Munich on Friday, before returning to the road.



Still not satisfied.

It is quite common that today's stars of road cycling have learned their skills in cyclo-cross, like Mathieu van der Poel or Wout van Aert.

Benjamin Thomas (26) preferred the track to the beginnings of his career.

From now on, the French velodrome track record has few equals.

Quadruple world champion, he has just enriched his trophy cabinet with two new European champion titles (team pursuit and points race), Friday in Munich.

“It is only emotions to bring back a new title after that of the team pursuit, reacted Benjamin Thomas after his second coronation.

I was really on the race for points to please myself, because my Championships end tonight (Friday).

I will join my team (Cofidis) to participate in the Polynormande on Sunday, so it was really a perfect day.

Leaving with two jerseys, we couldn't ask for better.

»

Benjamin Thomas' recital!!!

🙌 The Frenchman 🇫🇷 becomes double European champion in the points race after a superb race!

#LesRP pic.twitter.com/r0Jy13C9ux

– Eurosport France (@Eurosport_FR) August 12, 2022

The road after the track, this is the daily life of Benjamin Thomas since the beginning of his career.

Today, he continues to write the golden pages of tricolor track cycling while his road results improve over time.

“It is part of a progression that he has had for years.

But what he does on the road, it strengthens him even more for what he does on the track and it is really impressive”, judge Morgan Kneisky, former teammate on the track and friend of Benjamin Thomas.

The road and the track in parallel

When they met in the French track cycling team, the two men immediately bonded.

"I took him under my wing like a big brother and I taught him everything there is to learn and how I see things," recalls Kneisky.

It was more a relationship of big brother and little brother than master and pupil.

Also a road runner, the 2009 scratch world champion was able to share his knowledge of both disciplines with his protege.

Now eight-time European champion in the velodrome, little brother Benjamin Thomas has particularly stood out in recent seasons on the asphalt.

2021 French time trial champion, he finished 3rd in the exercise this year.

In addition, he added to his record the Étoile de Bessèges, the Tour du Gard, as well as the Boucles de la Mayenne.

Performance that fits into a dual-faceted rider profile.

“He has always done road and track in parallel, recalls Morgan Kneisky.

When he arrived in 2016, he was already doing dual activity like many runners, but he's the only one I've seen continue over the years.

»

“The track brings a lot to the road and vice versa.

He is incredible because he manages to adapt from one discipline to another without having too much adaptation time.

Me, I needed time, it's instantaneous, continues the former rider of the Continentale Groupama-FDJ.

He is out of the ordinary.

We have one rider per nation with these qualities, but he is the best of them all.

»

"Calm, composed and intelligent"

Regardless of his field of expression, Benjamin Thomas highlights his great athletic abilities, his endurance, as well as important mental qualities.

"Benjamin's strength is his intelligence, he knows what to do at what time to save his strength, assures his former teammate with whom he was American world champion in 2017. He always knows how to use the peloton to put his strengths in the final and to perform well.

On the track, he knows how to make the race easy and to be able to perform.

It is a whole that makes it express itself both on the road and on the track.

»

“Calm and composed” in life, even if “a little crazy at times”, the quadruple world champion is nonetheless “determined”.

Morgan Kneisky affirms it, the goal of his ex-teammate is not to pile up titles and medals but to make history by the diversity of his results.

“He doesn't want to be 20 times world champion in the omnium or the points race.

Him, his objectives are for example to be world champion at least once in each discipline.

What motivates him is to do extraordinary things.

» With an ultimate very specific goal in mind: « To be an Olympic omnium champion would be the point of honor of his career.

After the failure of Tokyo, this could be the climax of a prestigious double career.

Source: leparis

All sports articles on 2022-08-13

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