The Tour de France trophy won by Team Sky's Geraint Thomas this summer has been stolen from a display in Birmingham, England, the British team has confirmed.
Team Sky had been displaying all three grand tour trophies won by its riders -- last year's Vuelta a Espana and this year's Giro d'Italia secured by Chris Froome and Thomas' Tour trophy, which he won in July.
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In a statement, Team Sky said it had loaned the trophies to bicycle manufacturers Pinarello. Thomas' Tour trophy was stolen when it was "momentarily left unattended" during the clear-up operation at the end of the Cycle Show at the National Exhibition Center.
Police are investigating and Team Sky said it was "liaising with all relevant parties to agree on the best course of action to resolve the issue."
Thomas, the first Welshman to win the Tour, said: "It is incredibly unfortunate that this has happened.
"It goes without saying that the trophy is of pretty limited value to whoever took it, but means a lot to me and to the team. Hopefully whoever took it will have the good grace to return it.
"A trophy is important, but clearly what matters most are the amazing memories from this incredible summer -- and no-one can ever take those away."
Richard Hemington, managing director of Pinarello (UK) said: "We are obviously devastated about this. We accept full responsibility and have personally apologized to Geraint. Obviously we all hope that the trophy can be recovered."