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A determined Cadel Evans (BMC) kicks off his Dauphine.
Australian finishes runner-up in Dauphiné for fourth time
Cadel Evans (BMC Racing) secured second place overall at the Critérium du Dauphiné on Sunday, leaving his team director John Lelangue declaring that he is confident ahead of next month's Tour de France.
Evans finished 1:26 behind Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) having rode consistently in both of the two individual time trials and the mountain stages. He finished seventh on the final stage, in the same time as Wiggins, but did enough to hold off Alexandre Vinokourov (Astana), who finished third overall.
"All things considered, I'm pretty happy with second for once," Evans said. "We were so closely matched here all week and the racing has been hard from start to finish each day. We didn't see the overall contenders winning many stages because it was so closely matched between the first three or four on the general classification."
With the Tour less than a month away Evans will be hoping to go one better than the two second places he achieved in 2007 and 2008.
Having already won Tirreno-Adriatico and the Tour de Romandie this season, the 34-year-old is enjoying one of his best build-ups in years. He has profited from a racing a light schedule and will have between 32-35 days of racing in his legs by the time he starts the Tour.
Evans' team director John Lelangue added that the Dauphiné had been a good tune-up for the Tour de France. "We had some good tests and the time trial was good preparation, especially with mostly the guys who are going to be at the Tour," he said. "Finishing second here, winning Tirreno-Adriatico and the Tour de Romandie, and having a good Volta a Catalunya, we can be confident on the approach to the Tour de France."