Talansky holds off Contador to win Critérium du Dauphiné as Froome cracks
Andrew Talansky claimed this year’s Critérium du Dauphiné, after wresting the leader’s jersey from Alberto Contador during today’s 8th and final stage.
Meanwhile, Team Sky’s Mikel Nieve won the stage, after successfully riding away from a lead group of riders containing Talansky, Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Lotto-Belisol), and Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale) along the final climb of today’s grueling 131.5 kilometer stage from Megève to the uphill finish in Courchevel.
Bardet also managed to ride clear in the waning moments of today’ stage to claim second place, followed by Adam Yates in third.
Talansky finished fourth in today’s stage, putting him more than a minute ahead of race leader Contador, who failed to close the gap on the American rider.
“You put your life into something — the sacrifices, the training, the times when you crash or get sick — but it’s moments like this that make everything worth it,” said Talansky. “Just one moment like this makes you forget it all. This is why we do this, for moments like today.”
Talansky succeeded in making it into an early breakaway group, along with teammate Ryder Hesjedal – moving himself into the virtual lead, as Contador and Chris Froome languished behind in indecision.
As the two riders hesitated to assume control, Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) initiated an attack of his own – in pursuit of Talansky.
With 24 kilometers remaining, Contador decided to make a go of it alone. Unfortunately, Froome couldn’t follow, and had to settle in behind teammates Geraint Thomas and Richie Porte and ride his own pace.
In the meantime, Contador swept past rider after rider in pursuit of the leaders, while Nibali remained 48 seconds off of Talansky group.
As for Froome, the British rider continued to lose ground – subsequently falling back a full minute behind Contador.
Up front, Talansky led the break over the category 1 climbs of Côte de Montagny, followed by the final ascent of Montée de Courchevel Le Praz for 5.9 kilometers at 6.2 percent grade.
Following the climb of the Côte de Montagnys, Talansky proceeded to descend along along the fast, technical descent with conviction – ultimately stringing out the breakaway group and increasing his advantage over Contador, who began today’s stage with a 39 second lead over the America.
Indeed, with 7.5 kilometers remaining, Talansky continued to ride undeterred, along with some occasional assistance from fellow breakaway companion Van Den Broeck.
With just over 3 kilometers remaining, Nieve leaped from the lead group, and set off on his own.
Behind, Van Den Broeck and Talansky continued to lead the group, while both Nibali and Contador began to fall outside of their grasp.
Nieve managed to hang on for the stage win, while members of the pursuit battled it out for the final positions – with Bardet attacking the Talansky-Van Den Broucke group in the final kilometers to take second place behind Nieve.
Talansky and Van Den Broucke crossed the line together in fourth and fifth places respectively, with Contador arriving a 1:14 later, followed by Froome at more than five minutes back.
When the final times were calculated, Talansky won the race by 27 seconds over Contador, with Van Den Broeck moving into third a further 35 seconds back.
© / B.Papon
Stage 8 Results
ESP 1 NIEVE ITURALDE, Mikel (SKY) 3:20:29 FRA 2 BARDET, Romain (AG2R LA MONDIALE) + 3 GBR 3 YATES, Adam (ORICA GreenEDGE) + 5 USA 4 TALANSKY, Andrew (GARMIN SHARP) + 9 BEL 5 VAN DEN BROECK, Jurgen (LOTTO BELISOL) USA 6 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay (BMC RACING) + 15 NED 7 KELDERMAN, Wilco (BELKIN) + 32 FRA 8 GADRET, John (MOVISTAR) + 36 ESP 9 NAVARRO GARCIA, Daniel (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) + 41 ESP 10 CONTADOR VELASCO, Alberto (TINKOFF-SAXO) + 1:15 DEN 11 FUGLSANG, Jakob (ASTANA) SLO 12 KOREN, Kristijan (CANNONDALE) + 1:44 RUS 13 TROFIMOV, Yury (KATUSHA) ITA 14 NIBALI, Vincenzo (ASTANA) CZE 15 KONIG, Leopold (NETAPP – ENDURA) + 1:51 FRA 16 VOECKLER, Thomas (EUROPCAR) + 2:10 BEL 17 BAKELANTS, Jan (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) + 2:38 COL 18 ATAPUMA HURTADO, Darwin (BMC RACING) ITA 19 FAVILLI, Elia (LAMPRE – MERIDA) + 3:53 GBR 20 FROOME, Christopher (SKY) + 5:05 ESP 21 LOPEZ GARCIA, David (SKY) SUI 22 REICHENBACH, Sébastien (IAM CYCLING) FRA 23 CHEREL, Mikael (AG2R LA MONDIALE) ESP 24 MATE MARDONES, Luis Angel (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) ESP 25 ANTON HERNANDEZ, Igor (MOVISTAR) ESP 26 MORENO FERNANDEZ, Daniel (KATUSHA) + 5:23 EST 27 KANGERT, Tanel (ASTANA)
General Classification after Stage 8 USA 1 TALANSKY, Andrew (GARMIN SHARP) 31:08:08 ESP 2 CONTADOR VELASCO, Alberto (TINKOFF-SAXO) + 27 BEL 3 VAN DEN BROECK, Jurgen (LOTTO BELISOL) + 35 NED 4 KELDERMAN, Wilco (BELKIN) + 43 FRA 5 BARDET, Romain (AG2R LA MONDIALE) + 1:20 GBR 6 YATES, Adam (ORICA GreenEDGE) + 2:05 ITA 7 NIBALI, Vincenzo (ASTANA) + 2:12 ESP 8 NIEVE ITURALDE, Mikel (SKY) + 2:59 ESP 9 NAVARRO GARCIA, Daniel (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) + 3:04 DEN 10 FUGLSANG, Jakob (ASTANA) + 3:17
You must be logged in to post a comment.