Bonjour and welcome to the Cyclingnews live race centre for stage 3 of the mountainous Critérium du Dauphiné.
As the clock ticks down to the start of the stage, the riders are signing on.
L’équipe @BahrainMcLaren au complet derrière son leader 🇪🇸@MikelLandaMeana !Team @BahrainMcLaren, all together with the leader 🇪🇸 @MikelLandaMeana!#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/KQBa0MBsI9August 14, 2020
Today's stage is another day, with another summit finish and with the giant Col de la Madeleine along the way.
The stage is only 157km long but the Col de la Madeleine is as huge climb, with the final climb up to the finish at Saint-Martin-de-Belleville also 14km long.
The Irishman crashed hard during the high-speed run-in to the Col de la Porte, the final climb on Thursday's stage 2.
Martin landed hard on his lower back but got up and finished the stage. However, he was later diagnosed with a non-dislocated sacral fracture. He headed home in the hope of healing up in time for the Tour de France, which is due to start in Nice on Saturday August 29.
"I am really hopeful that I will be ready for the Tour de France," Martin said. "It's a shame as I felt I was in great shape but I'm a fast healer and I have reason to remain optimistic."
Click here (opens in new tab) to read our full story.
Team Ineos are now on stage. It will be a big day for the British team as they try to take on Jumbo-Visma and Egan Bernal tries to take time back on Primoz Roglic.
Bernal again races in the best young rider white jersey.
Here is Roglic in the leader's yellow jersey.
🇫🇷 #Dauphiné Focus 👀 @rogla Important day ahead. 🚩 in 15 minutes pic.twitter.com/b80IviNZKxAugust 14, 2020
Jumbo-Visma is packed strong riders including Milan-San Remo winner Wout van Aert, who is wearing the green points jersey.
Tony Martin and Tom Dumoulin are also key riders today.
Riders are now lining-up for the roll out from Corenc. They are wearing mask but the sun is out.
The weather is in stark contrast to Thursday afternoon when a hail storm hit the end of the stage. The overall contenders got wet but much of the peloton was battered by hailstones.
Click here (opens in new tab) to read our story and see a collection of videos from riders and teams.
Tony Martin took shelter under an inflatable, while Tim De Clercq suffered huge welts on his back from the hailstones.
Several riders had to wait at the finish for the hailstone storm to ease.
UNA MANTAAAAA 🥶 📸 Cyclingimages pic.twitter.com/gv2nEpyKiBAugust 14, 2020
One minute to roll out!
They're off. The riders roll out for the start of the 157km stage.
🚩 Le drapeau s’abaisse,l’étape 3 du #Dauphiné est lancée !🚩Wheels are rolling, stage 3 is underway! pic.twitter.com/COYzumYA98August 14, 2020
We are expecting a break to form early on the valley roads out of Grenoble, before the GC contenders gather on the front for the climb of the Col de la Madeleine. It is 17.3km long at 8.3%, so a major climb that will shake-out the GC yet again.
Juan Pedro Lopez (Trek-Segafredo) is another non-starter. He crashed yesterday and sadly fractured his wrist.
154km to go
The riders are all together as they roll out of the suburbs of Grenoble.
To catch up on the action of stage 2 at the Dauphine, click here (opens in new tab) to read our full stage report and see the full results and our 30-image photo gallery.
Primoz Roglic was unbeatable yet again.
Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck-QuickStep) and Xandro Meurisse (Circus-Wanty Gobert) tried to attack but the fast-moving peloton soon brought them back.
Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) took second place, eight seconds back, while Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-Hansgrohe) rounded out the podium ahead of a nine-man chase group on a day which saw a number of big names fall by the wayside.
Roglič charged away from his competitors on a day which saw Team Ineos make much of the pace up the final hors catégorie climb.
The British squad put in place their usual routine of setting a high pace but when Pavel Sivakov peeled off with 2km to race, with Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas already distanced, Egan Bernal didn't move, leaving Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) to pull the group towards the finale.
Roglic then took off, distancing everyone else.
Primoz Roglic wins stage 2 atop Col de Porte (opens in new tab)
If you're unsure of how to pronounce Roglic's name, he has done for you in this video.
A pronuncia do nome pelo próprio dono. Primoz Roglic. #Ciclismonaespn #dauphine pic.twitter.com/sVfAlMKDXkAugust 14, 2020
Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck-Quick Step) is trying to go clear again, this time alone but the peloton is chasing him down.
Gruppo compatto. Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck-Quick Step) has been caught and so the peloton is all back together.
The Dauphine has always been a key indicator of form for the Tour de France and especially so this year. All eyes have been on Chris Froome as he returns to the race where he crashed last year and suffered a number of fractures.
There is growing debate about if Froome is fit enough to secure a place in the Team Ineos Tour line-up.
Many may have expressed doubts but the Briton appeared confident that he can show enough form during this week’s Critérium du Dauphiné to convince Team Ineos’ management to select him for cycling’s marquee event.
“I’ve obviously only had a handful of days of racing in over a year, so I’m still finding the race rhythm, but I’m feeling better and better as I do more days of racing and I’m still optimistic about the Tour,” Froome said, having produced what was his best performance since his return to racing at the Route d’Occitanie just 13 days ago.
Click below to read the full story.
Chris Froome: I'm still optimistic about the Tour de France (opens in new tab)
As the riders hit a short climb in Goncelin, André Greipel, Nils Politt, Alexander Kristoff and Thomas De Gendt have been distanced. They face a long day out if they fail to get back in the bunch.
130km to go
The race has turned off the main valley road and is climbing into the valley toward the intermediate sprint in La Rochette. This fast start with no break must be hurting everyone's legs.
Quentin Pacher (B&B Hotels-Vital Concept) has retired. He suffered a crash on stage 1 and was still suffering at the start
The rolling terrain has helped seven rider open a gap.
Daniel Oss (Bora), Bob Jungels (Deceuninck), Jasha Sütterlin (Sunweb) and Maxime Chevalier (B&B Hotels) are in the breakaway.
We'll lower the CN blimp very soon to get all the rider names.
The UCI officials were out at the start, using their infamous tablet device to check for hidden mechanical doping.
🚲✅ @UCI_cycling #allezALM #Dauphiné @EddyMerckxBikes pic.twitter.com/mcvnHHIZ0mAugust 14, 2020
The Colombian road race champion was able to remount and finish the stage, while teammate Dani Martinez kept pace with the front group on the summit finish on the Col de Porte and is now the team's best hope for the GC, 20 seconds down on race leader Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) in 10th place overall.
Read our story here: Higuita shrugs off Critérium du Dauphiné crash (opens in new tab)
Update from @HiguitSergio. Excited to see him in stage 3 at the #CriteriumduDauphine today! 🇫🇷🚲 pic.twitter.com/UFFx6FYyn3August 14, 2020
As we near the intermediate sprint, these are the seven riders on the attack:
Oss, Jungels, Latour, Formolo, Juul Jensen, Kragh Andersen, Sutterlin, Niv and Chevalier.
128km to go
Kragh Andersen wins the sprint to take 10 points, beating Sütterlin and Formolo.
However the peloton is only 20 seconds behind them, like a shark waiting to bite.
The peloton appears to have eased and let the nine attackers go clear.
They are Daniel Oss (Bora-Hansgrohe), Bob Jungels (Deceuninck-QuickStep), Pierre Latour (AG2R), Davide Formolo (UAE Team Emirates), Christopher Juul Jensen (Mitchelton-Scott), Soren Kragh Andersen, Jasha Sütterlin (Team Sunweb), Guy Niv (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Maxime Chevalier (B & B-Vital Concept).
They have pushed their lead out to 1:20 on the long straight valley road.
There are some interesting names in the nine-rider attack. Bob Jungels (Deceuninck-Quick Step), Pierre Latour (AG2R) and Davide Formolo (UAE Emirates) could, in theory, target the stage victory and have the climbing ability to handle the mighty Col de la Madeleine.
Italian national champion Formolo suffered yesterday and so is 35th position in the GC, 4:54 race leader behind Primoz Roglic. Jumbo-Visma will have to lead the chase.
128km to go
Jumbo-Visma have taken up position at the head of the peloton to chase the nine-rider break. The gap is now 2:30.
The riders have covered a fast 50.3km in the first hour of racing. Ouch!
After 70km of fast racing, the break's lead is up to 3:25.
Is it too early to anoint Roglic as the next Tour de France winner? Perhaps so.
Four weeks out from the first proper summit finish of the Tour, and the Slovenian is in a league of his own and not even last year’s Tour champion, Team Ineos leader Egan Bernal (opens in new tab) can get close to him.
Click below to read Daniel Benson's full analysis.
Dauphiné analysis: Too early to anoint Roglic as Tour de France champion (opens in new tab)
The riders can see the Col de la Madeleine looming over the left shoulder.
The Tour de France has climbed it 26 times since 1969 but this year it will be climbed via La Chambre for the first time during stage 17 between Grenoble and the mighty Col de la Loze. The route of today's stage is almost identical until km 140.
70km to go
The break has turned off the main road and started to climb the Col de la Madeleine. It's going to be 17.3km of pain at 8.3%.
This is the first time since the return of racing that the riders will climb to an altitude of 2000 metres.
The break of Daniel Oss (Bora-Hansgrohe), Bob Jungels (Deceuninck-Quick Step), Pierre Latour (AG2R), Davide Formolo (UAE Emirates), Christopher Juul Jensen (Mitchelton Scott), Soren Kragh Andersen, Jasha Sütterlin (Sunweb), Guy Niv (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Maxime Chevalier (B & B-Vital Concept) still lead by 3:30 but has broken up.
Only Formolo and Latour are out front now.
Jungels, Juul Jensen, Kragh Andersen and Chevalier form the next group on the road, 15 seconds behind the leading duo. Oss, Niv, and Sutterlin have been distanced.
Formolo drops Latour now and goes alone. It's all kicking off pretty early on the Madeleine in the break.
Latour finished more than 15 minutes down yesterday. He injured his wrist in a crash but was cleared to start today. The Frenchman was due to lead AG2R at the Tour until the pandemic flipped Romain Bardet's plans, but he'll still enjoy a share of that leadership. Like Bardet, Latour is off at the end of the year, moving to Total Direct Energie.
Formolo, meanwhile, is out to make amends after a bruising day for UAE Team Emirates. Both he and David de la Cruz lost more than four minutes, while Tadej Pogacar fared better but still finished a minute down on his Tour rivals.
Here's Latour on the Madeleine. An ever-reliable gurner.
Arkea-Samsic have taken to the front of the peloton on this climb. Jumbo-Visma are forced to take a back seat as Nairo Quintana's men look to dictate proceedings.
It's been steady in the peloton so far on the Madeleine, with Formolo managing to stretch the gap out to 4:40.
60km to go
Formolo is 10km from the top of the Col de Madeleine and has opened up a lead of 45 seconds over Latour. Jungels, Kragh Andersen, Chevalier are further back, with Juul-Jensen dropped from that group and slipping back towards Oss, Sutterlin, and Niv. The peloton are at 5 minutes.
This is the picture in the peloton
Formolo is the virtual leader of the Dauphiné as he takes his advantage over the bunch to 5:25. He was 4:54 down on Roglic at the start of the day. He's not going to be riding into the lead here but the prospect of a stage win may start to enter his mind if the gap continues to grow on the upper slopes here.
Formolo has pushed the peloton back towards the six-minute mark but Latour is now hanging in there at one minute. 5km to the top.
Arkea have increased the tempo now as they get onto the upper slopes.
Arkea have four riders on the front now, with Quintana last man in the line behind French champion Warren Barguil.
Meanwhile, Chris Froome is at the back of thew 50 or so group. He might be distanced soon but he's fighting with pride.
Formolo is near the summit now. He grabs a musette with fresh bidons and prepares for the long fast descent.
This shot from the race director's car shows Froome at the back.
Climb up Madeleine behind @chrisfroome @dauphine #Dauphine pic.twitter.com/9b6M06NGbQAugust 14, 2020
51km to go
At the summit of the Col de la Madeleine, Formolo leads Latour by 50 seconds. Bob Jungels is further back, with the peloton at a steady 5:45.
As the peloton nears the summit of the Col de la Madeleine, with Wout van Aert leading the line. He is far more than just a Classics winner and cyclocross world champion!
45km to go
The peloton is also on the fast descent, like Formolo, they also take a few risks on the hairpins.
Formolo is attacking the descent but taking risks. He just locked up his back wheel on one curve.
The peloton is lined out on the fast descent, with five Jumbo-Visma 'killer wasps' leading the line.
Formolo is 4:54 down on GC and so now is virtual race leader.
However Jumbo seems happy to let him hang out front, confident they can chase him down on the climb to the finish.
30km to go
The fast descent is almost over but there is only a short valley road and then the 14.6km climb to the finish begins again to Saint-Martin-de-Belleville.
Formolo calls for his team car, perhaps to get fresh bidons and some tactical advice on the valley road. His strategy is simple. He leads the peloton by 5:00, so needs to go for the stage victory.
Pierre Latour (AG2R) lost more than a minute to Formolo on the descent and is now 2:25 down on him. He's stick in the middle of no man's land as Wout van Aert drives the peloton along behind.
20km to go
Van Aert has upped the pace, even spitting out other riders from the peloton.
Robert Gesink now takes over at the front for Jumbo-Visma.
Formolo passes through Moutiers and will soon switch to the small side roads for the climb to the finish. It twists and turns for 14.6km.
🏁 19km - ⏱ 4'42''🚴🏻♂️ À l'avant du peloton, c'est l'équipe @JumboVismaRoad qui mène la chasse. 🚴🏻♂️ At the front of the peloton, @JumboVismaRoad team is leading the chase.#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/X8IWTbDNb3August 14, 2020
Here we go, Formolo sweeps right and begins the 14.8km climb.
This is the view in the peloton.
The early part of the Saint-Martin-de-Belleville.climb includes three kilometres at 9%. It's the perfect place to attack!
Wout van Aert is still on the front after Gesink eases up, his job done today.
Dumoulin sits behind Van Aert, with Steven Kruijswijk and then Roglic.
Meanwhile, Julian Alaphilippe eases up. His stage is done and doesn't look the rider he was in 2019.
Chris Froome fought to stay in the peloton over the Col de la Madeleine but has now been dropped.
Bernal, Thomas and three other Ineos riders are still in the main group.
10km to go
Formolo is rocking in the saddle and sweating as he suffers in the steepest part of the climb. He leads by 3:20.
He's lost the virtual race lead but can he hang on for the stage victory?
Behind, Wout van Aert is still on the front and making it hurt.
Adam Yates is at the back of the group, punching the tickets as riders drop out the back.
Van Aert has moved off the front, with Dumoulin taking over. He has Kuss, Roglic and Kruijswijk behind him.
The gradient eases for the peloton but Formolo continues to suffer out front. He's grimacing but his lead has melted to 2:10. He seems too tired to hold on and win the stage.
There are only 20 or so riders in the front chase group now.
🏁 7,5 km - ⏱ 2'35''C'est désormais 🇳🇱@s_kruijswijk qui emmène le peloton du Maillot Jaune derrière 🇮🇹@davideformolo, seul en tête. 🇳🇱 @ s_kruijswijk now leads the peloton behind 🇮🇹@davideformolo, alone in the lead.#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/4X7s6shg8YAugust 14, 2020
Leonard Kämna accelerates off the front, as Adam Yates drops out the back.
Formolo is suffering as he passes the 5km to go banner.
Geraint Thomas has been distanced from the front group. Bernal only has Sivakov to help him now.
Dumoulin also eases up after his long turn on the front.
3km to go
Formolo fights on but his lead is down to 1:20. There are 20 or so riders left in the chase group.
There's a real sense the attacks will come soon. Roglic leads Pinot by just 12 seconds and so even late attacks can change the GC.
Just 1km of climbing to go now. It will be a sprint to the line over the top.
Sepp Kuss is on the front for Roglic. Landa and Buchmann are behind them.
Kamna is swept up. Only Formolo remains out front. Can he hang on? This will be close.
Formolo passes under the red flag. He leads by 55 seconds and can hang on to win.
There are big crowds at the finish but they are all wearing masks.
Martinez attacks from EF but here comes Formolo.
Formolo holds on to win by 33 seconds.
Roglic leads the chase home to take some time bonuses, with Pinot third.
Formolo flies the flag for Italy, the tricolore colours on his jersey as Italian national champion.
It seemed he would be caught on the steep section of the climb but he never gave in or eased up, pushing a big gear to stay away.
Roglic took a six-second time bonus and so extended his lead on Pinot to 14 seconds.
This is the moment Formolo won the stage.
🏆 @davideformolo jusqu’au bout !🏆 @davideformolo did it! pic.twitter.com/8ndFxNI8v9August 14, 2020
In the GC battle, it was a day of suffering and studying. JUmbo rode a hard pace for Roglic but he did not go on the attack, preferring to expose Team Ineos' weakness and see how and when Froome, Thomas and the others were dropped.
Formolo understandably need to do some stretching post-race after his big day out front.
😅 Quelques étirements bien nécessaires après un tel numéro.😅 Some stretching for the winner 🇮🇹@davideformolo.#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/ZRwJCcYKwBAugust 14, 2020
Not everyone had a successful day Higuita of EF finishes now, some 14:35 down and clearly suffering after his crash yesterday.
Here comes Chris Froome. He eased up and finishes 15:51 down on Formolo. The time gap is relative but it is clear Froome is not yet competitive. Can he be back to his best for the Tour de France and so earn a place in the Team Ineos squad? Time will tell.
Alaphilippe finishes 18:00 down. There are also some questions about his form, with the Tour de France only two weeks away.
Davide Formolo talked about his winning attack, revealing he knew he had to attack and go solo on the Madeleine if he want to win.
“I was in the break from the start with eight guys, and already before the Col de la Madeleine I said ‘we only have three minutes – there’s no way to wait until the finish’. So I said to myself ‘just ride your good rhythm on the Madeleine, and try and get some space between the bunch’," the Italian explained.
"Then I actually thought the last climb started straight after the descent, but it was 10km up and down in the valley. That was really hard – I lost a lot of energy in the valley.
"On the last climb I didn’t know if I could make it. I was looking at the profile and saw the Madeleine was really hard then I saw this last climb was slightly up and down the whole time. I thought it would be impossible to make a big difference in the break so I’d better attack on the Madeleine, and then pray I came to the finish line.”
Here's Formolo going deep on the climb.
The Jumbo-Visma killer wasps again controlled the peloton today, forcing everyone to sit behind them all stage.
Here are the early photos from the stage finish, with Formolo rightly celebrating his stage win.
And his moment on the podium.
Primoz Roglic kept the leader's yellow jersey for another day.
To read our full report from the stage and look through our photo gallery and full results, click below.
Critérium du Dauphiné: Formolo wins stage 3 (opens in new tab)
It's another busy weekend of racing but we will have full live coverage of Il Lombardia on Saturday and full live coverage of the final stage of the Dauphine on Saturday and Sunday.
Both stage climb into the Alps yet again, both finishing in the ski resort of Megeve. They are both expected to test the form of the Tour de France contenders and mark another chapter in the battle between Team Ineos and Jumbo-Visma.
Join us for all the action, reports and exclusive stories.
Thanks for join us for our live coverage. See you on Saturday for more!
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