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"It’s not where it should be, but it’s a lot better than the beginning of the week, so that’s positive. We still have some work to do before the Tour but we have time and I think my level is good for now.”

Photo: Sirotti






14.06.2015 @ 22:49 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

The 156.5-kilometer eighth and final stage at the Critérium Dauphiné all came down to one final category-one climb that concluded the eight-day race to determine who claimed ownership of the top step of the podium.


Bauke Mollema showed his back problems may well be on the mend, staying with the GC favorites until the last 8-kilometer uphill to eventually cross the line in a strong 15th place.


“It was again a really hard day since Sky wanted to go for the stage win and take the bonus seconds.  They made it really hard as there was a strong breakaway in front, and in the end it came down to the last climb. I just wanted to try today because I was feeling a lot better," Mollema said


“I think at the bottom I was a little bit too far back, but I didn’t expect Nibali to go full gas in the first kilometer. I was expecting to move up after one kilometer of climbing and that was a pity because after two kilometers of climbing I had to pass dropped guys and close the gaps. 

But overall it was a good test, and I am on the good way I think. It’s not where it should be, but it’s a lot better than the beginning of the week, so that’s positive. We still have some work to do before the Tour but we have time and I think my level is good for now.”


The final ascent to the finish became a heated battle between Chris Froome (Sky) and Tejay van Garderen (BMC) to determine who would cinch the overall, and when Froome launched his expected attack van Garderen dug deep but couldn’t keep the gap close enough to save his lead. In the end, Froome stole the show and snatched the yellow jersey from van Garderen by 10 seconds.  Rui Costa (Lampre Merida) completed the final podium in third.


The rest of the Trek Factory Racing team finished the Critérium Dauphiné after a frustrating week of up and downs, and can lay claim that it was not for a lack of effort that the results did not pan out as desired. The key stages where the team had its best stakes to play were a bitter fight between GC rivals leaving little opportunity for the rest, plus the team’s top GC leader, Bauke Mollema fought a nagging injury from day one, leaving the team absent from the overall classification battle.



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