Critérium du Dauphiné 2014: Stage 5
January 1 - June 15, Sisteron, France, Road - WorldTour
Bonjour and welcome to the Cyclingnews live coverage of stage five of the Criterium du Dauphine.
Today's 189.5km stage started is expected to be shaped by a breakaway, with the hills and the heat factors in making it a hard day in the saddle.
As we join the action after 25km of racing, the peloton is all together after a nasty crash left some riders in pain. The peloton is riding steady, allowing the riders in the crash to get back to the head of the race.
The crash occured after 14km and involved Sylvain Chavanel (IAM Cycling), teammate Jérôme Pineau, Jack Bobridge (Belkin), José Ivan Gutierrez (Movistar) and Danny Pate (Sky) who broke his handlebars.
Sadly Pineau has been forced to abandon the race due to a hand injury.
Sadly Kiwi Hayden Roulston (Trek Factory Racing) has also abandoned the race after the crash.
With the peloton back together, the racing is back on but the peloton refuses to let a break form. Team Sky has to ensure the break does not include riders who could become a threat overall.
According to Trek Factory Racing team, Rouslton is suffering with an Achilles tendon injury.
The roads begin to rise on the approach to the first categorised climb of the day: the Col de Manse, covered from the other side compared to yesterday's stage.
However the roads is fast and in the valley, making it difficult for a break to get away.
After some intense racing, we seem to have the break of the day.
There are nine riders in the move.
The nine are: Dimitri Gruzdev (Astana), Daryl Impey (Orica-GreenEdge), Blel Kadri (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Stig Broeckx (Lotto Belisol), Damiano Caruso and Alessandro De Marchi (Cannondale), Simon Spilak (Katusha), Michal Golas (OPQS) and Dries Devenyns (Giant-Shimano).
Behind the Europcar team is leading the chase because Italy's De Marchi is in third palce in the climber's competition.
129km remaining from 184km
The riders have covered 55km so far after a fast first hour marked by a nasty crash that involved numerous riders.
Europcar does not want the break to go away. The gap is down to just 30 seconds.
With six categorised climbs during the stage, Europcar is determined to defend Kevin Reza's polka-dot mountains jersey. Hence the chase.
The riders are now on the Col de Manse and the break seems to be going clear. The gap is rising.
The Col de Manse has split the peloton and the break, with De Marchi and Spilak attacking from the break in pursuit of the climber's points.
Other riders are attacking from the peloton to try to get across to the break of the day. This is going to be another fascinating day of racing.
Spilak (Katusha) is clear alone at the top of the climb but the race is exploding.
Behind, Kwiatkowski has been dropped from the peloton, such is the intensity of the racing.
The peloton finally seems to have eased, letting the break of ten riders and six chaser go clear.
104km remaining from 184km
The 16 riders have come together to form the break of the day.
The 16 with the golden ticket for the stage are: Christophe Le Mével (Cofidis), Daryl Impey (Orica-GreenEdge), Mikaël Chérel and Blel Kadri (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Cyril Gautier (Europcar), Bart De Clercq (Lotto-Belisol), Stephan Denifl (IAM Cycling), Damiano Caruso and Alessandro De Marchi (Cannondale), Darwin Atapuma (BMC), Egor Silin and Simon Spilak (Katusha), Jan Bakelants (OPQS), Arthur Vichot (FDJ.fr), Dries Devenyns (Giant-Shimano) and Bartosz Huzarski (NetApp-Endura).
The peloton is at 3:20.
Veteran Jens Voigt is chasing alone to try to get across to the break. He is almost there, just 20 seconds behind now.
100km remaining from 184km
He makes it, ensuring there are 17 riders in the breakaway.
We're back. sorry for the slight gap in our live coverage. The CN blimp needed an urgent refueling before returning to the race.
The breakaway of 17 riders retains a lead of 3:00 on the peloton, where Team Sky is riding to keep Atapuma in check.
80km remaining from 184km
The break has passed the second climb of the day, the côte du Motty, with De Marchi taking maximum points (4). He now has a total of 45 points and so takes the virtual lead in the climber's competition from Kevin Reza (Europcar).
Unfortunately we have another rider forced to abandon. Winner Anacona (Lampre-Merida) has climbed off at the feed. He was involved in a crash the other day.
Team Sky is controlling the break again today, just as they did on stage four to Gap.
Froome revealed the team hoped to let the leader's jersey go but other teams lead the chase, leaving Froome in yellow.
Read the full stage report and check out the photo gallery here.
59km remaining from 184km
After 125km of racing, the situation remains stable, with the break leading by 3:00.
However early crash victim Dominique Nerz (BMC) has been forced to quit the race.
De Marchi marches on. He is the first to the top of the côte du Pont-Haut, adding a further four points to his lead in the climber's competition.
The break is tackling the hardest part of the stage at the moment, with two climbs coming close together.
Bart De Clercq (Lotto Belisol) wins an intermediate sprint but the climb could see some riders struggle to stay in the break.
The race covers a long loop around the hills near La Mure. There are still 55km remaining.
More mountain points for De Marchi. The Italian is also the first to the top of the Col de Malissol, taking four more points.
The break is now on the Col de la Morte. It's a category 2 climb. It is only 3.1km long but kicks up at 8.4%.
It's another hot day in the sun for the riders today, with temperatures close to 30C yet again.
Caruso is setting the pace in the break, with Dries Devenyns (Giant-Shimano) dropped, leaving 16 riders up front.
Riders are also falling out of the back of the peloton, including William Bonnet (FDJ.fr), who shows signs of having crashed earlier on.
The climb has ended and suddenly we have attacks in the break and the peloton.
Bakelants (OPQS) has a go from the break, while Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) is aggressive at the front of the peloton.
De Marchi scored 10 points for first place to the top of the Col de la Morte.
De Marchi has 63 points now, giving him a good lead on Reza. However he will have to defend is lead in the final Alpine stages at the weekend.
The riders are diving down the descent. It's steep and twisty, with sections in the sun and the shade.
30km remaining from 184km
Team Sky is controlling the break. The gap is down to 2:20.
Attack! Contador is trying to go clear on the descent.
We also have a crash. Michael Valgren Andersen (Tinkoff-Saxo) went over the guardrail but seems ok.
Contador has the help of teammate Sergio Paulinho to help him. This could get interesting. It at least shows that Contador is trying to unsettle Froome and his other rivals.
Behind Fromoe has four Team Sky teammates setting the pace. However Contador has already gained a minute as he dances on the pedals on the rolling roads.
Contador is pushing a big gear as behind Team Sky seems unruffled. Behind them Michal Kwiatkowski (OPQS) is struggling big time and is being escorted by four teammates.
Cherel had opened a gap on the rest of the break but has been pulled back. All the riders know that Contador is coming across.
Behind Froome only has two riders to lead the chase.
Contador has joined De Marchi and Vichot. This has become a fascinating pursuit match.
Simon Spilak (Katusha) is the first to the summit of the climb. De Marchi takes second place, with Contador just behind him.
Team Sky is not far behind however. The gap is only 20 seconds now.
Team Sky is setting a fierce pace, with only 18 riders left in the yellow jersey group.
Contador has sat up and so has his breakaway companions.
Froome seems relieved that Contador is back under control.
Simon Spilak is still away up front, with Tanel Kangert (Astana) trying to go across to him.
Porte did several big turns to bring back Contador. The Tasmanian finally seems to be showing some form after a difficult season.
There are also several chasers between Spilak and the peloton, the remains of the break of the day.
Froome takes on a gel as Contador sips on a his bottle. Their battle at the Tour de France will be fascinating.
The eight chasers have been caught by some chasers from the peloton but the race is about to comeback together, with only Spilak up the road.
The attacks have caused a super-fast finish for the peloton.
10km remaining from 184km
It's a descent to the finish, giving Spilak a great chance of victory.
Spilak is tucked over his bars, with his Katusha jersey blowing in the wind.
More attacks behind, with Adam Yates (Orica) and Wilco Kelderman (Belkin) jumping away. Nibali also has a go, forcing Froome to chase.
Spilak is two kilometres from the finish. With DS Konychev telling him to stay cool and zip up his jersey.
Behind Team Sky is unable to control the peloton, with other riders jumping away.
Spilak is inside the final kilometre. He is going to win the stage.
Indeed. Spilak celebrates a well-deserved stage win.
Kelderman takes second and so gains a time bonus.
Kelderman and Yates finished 14 seconds behind, with the Froome group at 17 seconds.
Froome remains the race leader, with Contador second at 12 seconds and Kelderman third, now also at 12 seconds.
Thanks for following today's live coverage. We'll have a full stage report and huge phtoto gallery on Cyclingnews very soon.
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