Pedalcover’s founder Darren Thomas, combines years of experience in insurance with a career in cycling.
Darren’s passion for cycling goes back over 30 years after being inspired to get in the saddle by his father, who spent six months travelling through Europe on his bike.
Darren began cycling with his local club and quickly progressed through the ranks, taking part in time trials before falling in love with his passion, road racing.
He has enjoyed many successful years of competing, representing Wales in international pro-am events, including competing in the first Nehru Tour of India.
His cycle career took him to the hotbed of amateur cycling, in France, where he trained with Philippe Louviot French, professional road champion (team Z-Peugoet & Toshiba) and team mate of Bjarne Riss, the current Directeur Sportif to Tour de France winner, Alberto Contador.
Unfortunately damage to Darren’s iliac artery curbed his hopes for a professional career.
Many years later and after successful surgery, Darren took up triathlon. He has since competed in all distances, cumulating in Ironman France, the iconic swim-bike-run race combining a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and full marathon of 26.2 miles.
Today, with his racing career behind him, Darren likes nothing more than riding his bike on the legendary climbs of Europe and spending time riding in Majorca.
Darren can often be found out riding his bike (generally in sunny weather!) and always with a coffee stop.
With his return from professional cycling in France, Darren decided to focus his career in the insurance industry, having already served an apprenticeship with the ‘AA, one of the leading insurance brokers at the time.
Darren took up a managerial position at his local broker, where he quickly progressed to company Director and played a key part in establishing the business as one of Wales’s largest and most successful independent insurance brokers.
With growth and success, it wasn’t long before the business attracted major insurance brokers and in 2011, Giles Insurance acquired the business.
Darren continued at Giles as Personal Lines Director for Wales for another two years before exiting the business to pursue new avenues.
After struggling to find adequate insurance cover for his bikes, Darren consulted with a number of professional athletes about their experiences and designed a policy to meet the needs of today’s cyclists, triathletes and mountain bikers.
In 2014, he combined his passion for cycling with his career in insurance to launch PedalCover and the rest as they say is history.
PedalCover has since gone onto amass thousands of clients and picked up several awards including Darren’s own award – Great British Entrepreneur of the Year in 2015.
“It’s always wonderful to see people make a business out of their passion. Darren’s ability to tap into an emerging market is really impressive. Gaining recommendations from professional athletes is a real testament to his success.”
GB Entrepreneur of the Year
Darren’s passion for PedalCover and his clients is unrelenting and despite being very busy running the business, we do still occasionally let him out for the odd bike ride and coffee pitstop!