Rider of the week
Chris Froome rode solo towards the stage win and overall victory on Sunday, in the 67th Criterium du Dauphiné, with a display reminiscent of the ones he had on the mountains in the 2013 Tour de France. Still, the race wasn’t a walk in the park for the 30-year-old Brit, who has lost precious time in two important stages, the TTT between Rouanne and Montagny and on Pra-Loup, where everyone was expecting a one-man show, but eventually got to see a Froome which showed some uncharacteristical weaknesess.
During the week-end, the leader of Sky was at a completely different level and not only he scored two back-to-back stage wins on Saint-Gervais Mont Blanc and Modane Valfréjus, but by doing so, he rode everyone else off his back and took the overall classification for the second time, after the 2013 edition. On each of the two hard mountain stages, Froome sent his team at the front to prepair his attack and once the job was done by the likes of Ian Boswell and Wout Poels, he unleashed a fierce acceleration which couldn’t be matched by any of his opponents.
Looking behind just to make sure yellow jersey wearer Tejay van Garderen lost contact for good, Chris Froome flew on the slopes of the climbs and forged clear to win the GC of the Criterium du Dauphiné, a race in which he made a point from demonstrating that he’s very close of reaching top form just three weeks before the start of the Tour de France. On top of that, his victory in the week-long stage race will serve as an excellent and much needed psychological boost ahead of July’s top objective.