Tue, Jul 31, 12:28pm by Staff Writer
Welshman Geraint Thomas has won his first Tour de France title for Team Sky, continuing their dominance of the race in recent years.
Thomas is $3 at Sportsbet to defend his title next year, in a career best win for the 32-year-old.
He managed to hold off Dutchman Tom Dumoulin in the final stage, as riders trekked from Houilles to Paris.
Dumoulin is $3.50 to win his first Tour de France next year, with Thomas’ friend and teammate Chris Froome a $3.75 chance to win.
Australian Richie Porte had a Tour to forget, abandoning the event after stage nine.
The 33-year-old is among the contenders to win next year’s tour at $6, along with 2018 fourth placed finisher Primoz Roglic priced at $6.
Thomas’ victory included wins in stages 11 and 12, through grueling back-to-back mountain climbs midway through the race.
He finished more than two minutes ahead of teammate Chris Froome, a four-time winner of the Tour.
Froome crossed the finish line with Thomas, as the two shared an emotional moment, with the first-time winner riding alongside Froome for many years as his support rider.
The tables have now turned, with Thomas Team Sky’s strongest rider in 2018 and favourite to take out the race next year.
Slovakia’s Peter Sagan was the runaway winner in the points classification, nearly doubling his nearest competitor.
Sagan first wore the green jersey in the second stage and never relinquished his points advantage.
Final stage winner Alexander Kristoff of Norway finished second, with Frenchman Arnaud Démare in third.
Pierre Latour won the young rider classification, more than five minutes ahead of Team Sky’s Colombian rider Egan Bernal.
It was Team Movistar who took out the top honour in the team classification, 12-and-a-half minutes ahead of Bahrain-Merida and more than 30 minutes ahead of Team Sky.
The last of the three Grand Tours of 2018 takes place in Spain and begins later this month.
2019 Tour de France Odds – Sportsbet
Geraint Thomas $3
Tom Dumoulin $3.50
Chris Froome $3.75
Primoz Roglic $6
Richie Porte $6
Egan Bernal $17
Nairo Quintana $26
Vincenzo Nibali $26
Miguel Angel Lopez $34
Rigoberto Uran $34
Simon Yates $34
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