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Live coverage

Critérium du Dauphiné 2012: Stage 2

Hello and welcome to our live coverage from stage 2 of the Criterium du Dauphine, a 160km race from Lamastre to Saint-Félicien.

After around 40 kilometres of racing Christophe Kern (Europcar), Blel Kadri (AG2R), José Sarmiento (Liquigas-Cannondale) and David Moncoutié (Cofidis) broke clear of the field. They currently have an advantage of 3:20 over the Sky led peloton.

There were a number of attacks before the current break were allowed any space, with Sylvain Chavanel going solo and race leader Bradley Wiggins also nipping off the front in a dangerous break.

After yesterday's exciting finish, Bradley Wiggins leads the race on GC but Cadel Evans, winner of yesterday's stage is just one second down. It's the perfect position for Evans as Sky will need to control the field for today's stage:

Here's where we stand on GC:

1 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 4:43:04
2 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:00:01
3 Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro Team 0:00:02
4 Carlos Barredo (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
5 Tony Martin (Ger) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 0:00:04
6 Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank Cycling Team
7 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 0:00:05
8 Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 0:00:06
9 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team
10 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling

With 6 categorised climbs in today's stage, including a 4th cat climb to the finish, there's every chance that Wiggins will relinquish the race lead. You can view today's stage profile,  here.

So far the races has only covered the first of the climbs the Col de Montivernoux, with Kadri taking the maximum points on offer. Bernaudeau leads the competition with 23 points so if Europcar have hopes of keeping the KOM jersey Kern will have to take some of the remaining points away from Kadri.

News in that both Samuel Sanchez and Pierrick Fedrigo have abandoned the race.

78km remaining from 160km

The break is now on the Col de Clavière, with their advantage up to 3:45.

This isn't the toughest climb but at 12km in length and with an average gradient of 3.7 percent it will test some of the weaker climbers in the bunch.

Kadri is the virtual race leader,  by the way, having started the stage just 11 seconds down on Wiggins.

Pim Ligthart has abandoned the race and Kadri has taken another 10 points at the top of the climb with Kern unable to stop him. Kadri is now just 3 points off the lead in the KOM.

Team Sky is intent on doing the majority of the pace setting at the moment, having cut the break's lead to 2:55 by the top of the climb.

Bernaudeau has been jumping out of the peloton and taking 5th on the last two climbs in a bid to defend his lead. That puts him on 35 points and Kadri on 20. So it's not that close at the moment.

On the Col de Rochepaule Kadri takes another four points out of Bernaudeau's lead.

That looks like Dan Martin going out of the back of the bunch as the peloton start the next climb.

Sky are still doing the lion share of the work on the front for Wiggins, with BMC just behind them.

The four leaders are still working well together as Sarmiento calls for his team car.

Dan Martin is still feeling the effects of his crash.

The gap is continuing to come down, it's now at 1:47

There's a bit of a discussion between Kern and Kadri at the front of the break but they're still putting in the effort and working together.

Wiggins looks comfortable on the climb and it looks like he's asked his team to up the pace slightly.

Rémi Pauriol (FDJ) has attacked and has been joined by Brice Feillu, Thomas Voeckler and Mikaël Chérel (ALM).

38km remaining from 160km

The lead break have less than a minute on the bunch though with roughly 38km to go.

Boasson Hagen has moved to the front of the bunch for Sky and sets about controlling the pace on the descent of the last climb.

Rogers takes over from Boasson Hagen as the gap continues to fall, with the leaders at 35 seconds. There's no time check on the Voeckler group yet.

Nocentini is being paced back to the bunch after a mechanical.

Meanwhile Moncoutie leads the break on the this long descent. It looks as though the Voeckler group has been brought back.

Brice Feillu who was in the counter attack is at the back of the bunch picking up bidons for his teammate.

The twisty narrow roads have meant that Sky hasn't taken too many risks on the descent and as a result the gap goes out again to 48 seconds.

Kadri is still the virtual leader on the road, having started the stage 11 second down on Wiggins.

And there's an attack from GreenEdge

It might be Durbridge. He's got two men on his back wheel for now and more coming across.

As Vino slips back  to the Astana car.

The break is on the penultimate climb of the day.

It's Sulzberger not Durbrigde. He's joined by Roux from FDJ and three other riders.

And Kern takes the points at the top of the climb with Kadri only able to take second.

The Roux group have started attacking each other before the summit and they're  about to be brought back into the peloton.

Roux has about 8 seconds on the rest of the break but the bunch are closing.

17km remaining from 160km

25 seconds for the four leaders with Roux stuck  between the break and the peloton.

The leaders have started  to look at each other but with 13km to go and a lead of 29 seconds the don't have time to mess around.

Roux is gaining ground though. He's perhaps 10 seconds off the break.

Saur - Sojasun are doing most of the chasing now with Sky shifting back to look  after Wiggins before the finish.

Less than 10km to go and Saur - Sojasun continue to reel the break in. The gap is just 15 seconds.

The uphill finish will suit a number of riders today, Gilbert, Gerrans, Evans, Luis Leon Sanchez, for example

Roux is about to be caught by the bunch.

Quick Step have moved to the front with BMC paying close attention.

It looks like it's all come back together with 5km to go.

And AG2R have launched another rider up the road almost immediately.

It's Cherel.

Evans has moved his troops right to the front. Will BMC work towards a possible stage win for either Evans or Gilbert?

2.5km to go.

Schleck is at the very back of the bunch.

Hincapie is setting the pace for Evans, who has Nibali on his wheel.

Wiggins is around 20 riders back at the moment.

There's an attack from Liquigas and although it's more of a gentle acceleration and Evans answers. It looks like he's on his own at the front of the bunch.

Nibali continues to mark Evans.

And Evans has a teammate again as a rider from Movistar attacks. And is caught in the time it's take me to write that.

And Evans hits the front.

And Tony Martin goes for it

Gallopin chases

But Daniel Moreno takes it. The Katusha rider timed his sprint to perfection, reacting to Tony Martin's jump and then out-kicking his rivals for the stage win.

Wiggins, Nibali and Evans were all up there and finished inside the top 20.
 

Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha Team
2 Julien Simon (Fra) Saur - Sojasun
3 Tony Gallopin (Fra) RadioShack-Nissan
4 Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale
5 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team
6 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
7 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team
8 Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana Pro Team
9 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling
10 Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Team Europcar

1 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 8:45:42
2 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:00:01
3 Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro Team 0:00:02
4 Carlos Barredo (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
5 Tony Martin (Ger) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 0:00:04
6 Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank Cycling Team
7 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 0:00:05
8 Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 0:00:06
9 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team
10 Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling 0:00:07

Thanks for joining us today, and please tune in tomorrow for stage 3 from the Dauphine.

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