The 2016 Criterium du Dauphine starts with a short, but brutal time trial in the ski town of Les Gets. While it won’t decide the overall classification, it will set the scene for the week to come.
For Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Alberto Contador (Tinkoff) and the other general classification riders, it is the opening opportunity to take some time on their rivals. Riders have already been out to see what they’re in for and it’s going to be an extremely challenging start to the race. Fortunately for some, there is no time cut to worry about.
The opening gradients of the four kilometre time trial average just over six per cent but that’s as easy as it gets. It averages more than nine per cent and reaches as much as 15, and despite its short nature we are likely to see some sizeable splits.
Giant-Alpecin’s Zico Waeytens will have the honour of being the first rider to take on the course in anger at 11:40 local time and Wout Poels (Team Sky) will close out the day when he rolls down the ramp at 14:35. Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) will be one of the first GC favourites to begin his effort at 12:42 with Froome a few minutes later. Contador and Fabio Aru (Astana) have opted for later stats, going in the final 10 riders.
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