Portal - Geraint is a true leader


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Sky directeur sportif Nicolas Portal insisted Geraint Thomas, who replaces title-holder Richie Porte as the team leader for Paris-Nice, was by no means a second choice.

"From the start we had decided that Richie and Geraint would be joint leaders and that the race would decide between them," he said.
"Geraint was very close at the Tour Down Under and again at la Ruta del Sol. He's in splendid form and the course suits him perfectly. The finale in Fayence and the other climbs on the course like Mont Brouilly should suit his explosiveness and I cannot see him losing time," the French team director said.
Porte was finally entered in Tirreno-Adriatico to replace injured Tour de France champion Chris Froome and Portal said it was important for Team Sky to have a potential wine in every ProTour race.
While the Paris-Nice course, without a time trial or major climb, should account for a wide open race, Portal said it was also making teams nervous.
"When you have a big time trial or a long climb, it's easy. You know that the stronger man wins. Its not the case this time. Paris-Nice is often like a classic everyday and tactically, it makes things more tricky and teams more nervous," he said.

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Jersey wearers after the stage 8

Classifications after the stage 8


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