The 2018 Tour de France winner revealed in October that he had come to an agreement to stay with Ineos, though he had yet to put pen to paper on the contact, admitting that it had been "the worst one to redo".
On Monday afternoon, Ineos Grenadiers confirmed that Thomas would continue at the team for the next two seasons. The Welshman has been at the squad since its inception as Team Sky in 2010.
Thomas was left out of the Ineos team for the 2020 Tour de France and then crashed out of the subsequent Giro d’Italia. He started the 2021 Tour as one of the team’s four leaders after winning the Tour de Romandie and placing third at the Critérium du Dauphiné, but his race was compromised by an early crash.
"Obviously I had a tough end to 2021 but up until the crash at the Tour, I was in the best shape I’d been. I’m still very motivated to perform in the biggest races," Thomas said.
"I’ll probably look at doing the Ardennes, which I’ve never done properly. That’s exciting and new, and hopefully then go on the Tour to play a big role there."
The 35-year-old is one of four Grand Tour winners at Ineos, together with Egan Bernal, Richard Carapaz and Tao Geoghegan Hart, while Adam Yates, Richie Porte and Daniel Martinez are also among the stage racing talent on the roster. It is expected that Bernal will return to the Tour in 2022 after winning the Giro this year.
"I'm super excited about the last few years of my career with the team. It’s going to be fun - that’s the main thing," Thomas said. "People keep asking me what my role will be and obviously I want to keep winning myself, but being a part of a winning team and having fun with some of my best mates is as important – and to do that I’ll need to be at my best."
Thomas is the only rider to have been on the Sky/Ineos roster for all 12 years of its existence – Ben Swift had a two-season hiatus at UAE Team Emirates – and he has witnessed the team’s development over that period. After winning seven Tours out of eight between 2012 and 2019, Ineos’ domination has been halted by Tadej Pogačar’s back-to-back victories, as well as the collective might of Primož Roglič’s Jumbo-Visma squad.
"The team has evolved a lot over the past 12 years. The vibe in Mallorca [training] camp compared to recent years feels different with lots of young, new guys and fresh faces," said Thomas. "Everyone is excited about going forwards as a team, closer together. I want to play a key role in that."
It was announced this weekend that longstanding team manager Dave Brailsford would take on a new role as director of sport at Ineos, overseeing the sponsor’s operations a range of sports. He retains his role with the cycling team, with Rod Ellingworth bearing the title of deputy team principal.
"G has been with us since the start. He’s won the biggest races, mentored younger riders, been a brilliant ambassador for the sport and, throughout, helped to inspire countless people to get on their bikes," Ellingworth said.
"We know - and he knows - that there is still more to come. He is hungry for more success at the highest level. Next season is going to be a real fight. The competition is stronger than ever. We are going all in as a team and G is going to be a big part of that for us."
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