Rabobank started the Dauphiné Libéré with three riders in mind to ride a strong race. Team leader Robert Gesink wants to finish as high up on the classification as possible and with a 19th place in the opening time trial, just 16 seconds behind winner, Levi Leipheimer he has started the race in a strong position.
"Robert has indeed come here with ambitions for the final classification," explained Rabobank's sports director Adri van Houwelingen. "Which? He wants to finish as high up the classification as possible. We are not putting any pressure on him, but will see where he ends up. The field here is an extremely strong one."
Gesink will approach the next two stages with the intention of remaining as close to the leaders as possible before the time trial and following four mountain stages. We know that Robert will surrender a lot compared to the guys who are aiming for a good general classification at the Tour de France, but he is still trying to discover himself, and may surprise us. I am curious to see where this will lead."
Van Houwelingen believes that the second to last stage will be the toughest of the race. During the stage they will face the Col de la Croix de Fer before finishing atop the La Toussuire. "And that is a small 230 kilos long," he said.