Some of the world's best cyclists have been making their way through south Wales as part of the British national road race championship.
Geraint thomas has been handed a massive boost to his hopes of reclaiming the national road race title on home roads after sir Bradley wiggins pulled out of Sunday's British national road race championship in Abergavenny.
Wiggins had been expected to mount a serious challenge for the title after missing out on selection for this summers tour de France. His withdrawal though opens up further hopes I home success for Cardiff rider Geraint Thomas who is hoping to reclaim the title he won in 2010.
Wiggins withdrawal is the second big-name to miss out on the championship after mark cavendish withdrew last week through illness.
Geraint Thomas will again ride in the world's most famous cycle race in support of team leader and defending champion Chris Froome.
Froome's inclusion means that Team Sky principal Dave Brailsford has left out former Tour champion Bradley Wiggins, despite the Olympic Gold medallist showing his form winning Thursday's British national time trial title on the roads of Monmouthshire.
Thomas will play a key role in Sky's attempts to claim a third straight Tour win as Froome's chief sidekick throughout the three week race.
Many tip the Cardiff man to play a central role himself in years to come with GB coach and former Sky man Shane Sutton tipping him to be a future Grand Tour winner himself in years to come.
For now though Thomas must continue to play second fiddle for the 21 stage race, that finishes just seven days before he attempts to secure a victory of his own at the Commonwealth Games road race in Glasgow.
'It's certainly not ideal. It's a big three weeks of racing around France trying to help Froomey win really so it'll be tough for sure" he said.
"I think mentally it's ok because I know I've just got to keep going until the Sunday, just hopefully I can recover well, eat well, sleep well and that's pretty much all I can do go there and go as fast as we can."
Geraint Thomas has been named in Team Sky's nine man line-up for the Tour de France, beginning with the Grand Départ in Yorkshire on July 5.
The reigning national road race champion will not ride in the 2014 edition of the race after failing to overcome a bout of bronchitis.Read the full story ›
Geraint Thomas is relishing the challenge of a punishing month in his cycling career as the Tour de France and Commonwealth Games lie ahead.
He's part of a 17-strong Wales team for Glasgow next month that also includes the likes of multiple world champion Becky James, world and European team pursuit gold medallist Elinor Barker.
Ahead of his upcoming schedule, he said:
"I am really looking forward to the Commonwealth Games. It's been a while now since I have been racing for Wales, so I am really excited.
"It gives you an extra motivation and an extra hunger this time around to really go there and try to do a good job."
After the nationals - and subject to Team Sky selection - the Tour de France beckons for 28-year-old Thomas.
If he completes the Tour, he will then head straight to Glasgow for prospective medal bids in the time trial and team pursuit.
Thomas will contest Sunday's National Championship road race alongside the likes of Sir Bradley Wiggins and Luke Rowe - Thomas won the title four years ago - before the world's biggest cycling race potentially awaits.
A bout of bronchitis has ruled defending champion Mark Cavendish out of this weekend's event.
He'll be concentrating on getting fit for the Tour de France, according to a team statement.
"The National Championships are always a bit of a lottery," Thomas added.
"You don't really quite know what is going to happen, but I am looking forward to racing around on home roads again."
Olympic greats including Sir Bradley Wiggins, Geraint Thomas and Luke Rowe are set to take part in the British Cycling National Road and Time Trial Championships in Monmouthshire, which gets underway today.
The Time Trial event begins this afternoon, with the men and women's Road Race taking place on Sunday.
This will be the second time in five years that the championships has visited Wales, with the event held in Abergavenny in 2009.
The British National Road Race Championships get underway in Monmouthshire in less than a week.
The event, which begins next Thursday, will see some of the sport's most famous faces, including Sir Bradley Wiggins, take to the hills around South Wales.
The four day event also gives members of the public the chance to test their own skills - including our own Richard Morgan.
Cycling superstars such as Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish will descend upon Abergavenny next week for the annual British Cycling National Road Race Championship. It will be the second time in five years that the competition has come to Wales.
It will be Bradley Wiggins's second cycle on the infamous 'Tumble' track which saw him in a head to head race against Chris Froome in 2009.
The event takes places around Tumble Mountain with the course trekking 400 metres above sea level in under three miles.
The championship kicks off from the 26th of June.
British Cycling has revealed a star-studded entry list for the British national road race championship and time trial that will be held in Monmouthshire later this month.
An almost full quota of British stars including Sir Bradley Wiggins, Mark Cavendish, David Millar, Lizzie Armitstead and Laura Trott as well as Welsh riders Geraint Thomas and Luke Rowe has been announced for the race which will precede the Tour de France Grand Depart in Yorkshire on 5th July.
The only major absentee is Tour de France defending champion Chris Froome who has not yet added his name to the entry list.
The four day event will see Britain's best battle it out over mens and women's time trial courses around the roads of Monmouthshire on Thursday 26th June before the mens' and women's road races take place on Sunday 29th June.
There will also be an opportunity for the public to get a taste of the course in a mass participation ride on Saturday 28th.
In the men's road race, Mark Cavendish will defend the title he won last year, with home rider Geraint Thomas amongst those tipped to fight for the British Champion's jersey. In the women's race, defending champion Lizzie Armitstead is aiming for the third national title of her career.