Bonjour ands welcome to the Cyclingnews live coverage of stage 3 of the Criterium du Dauphine.
As we join the action, the peloton has just rolled out of Langeac in central "La France profonde"
The first half of the 172.5km stage is rolling on the plateau, before a drop down to flatter roads and fast race for a possible sprint finish.
The stage started from the home village of legendary French cycling journalist.
He covered 50 editions of the Tour de France for different media, most notably L’Équipe, until his death in June 1996.
Since 1989, the Prix Pierre Chany is an award for the best cycling news story in French during each Tour.
He also gave his name to a cycling race, La Pierre Chany, held in the department of Haute-Loire.
🚩 Et c’est parti ! direction Saint-Haon-le-Vieux !🚩 Let’s go! Direction Saint-Haon-le-Vieux !#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/K2qSjfxV4EJune 1, 2021
We have an early attack and the peloton seem happy to let then go.
Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert) are the heroes of the day.
Even though there are 2051m of vertical gain, today's stage should still suit the fast men of the Peloton. Check out today's profile.#Dauphiné | @dauphine pic.twitter.com/FmXbw98PFZJune 1, 2021
The two have opened a 1:20 lead after a fast opening 13km of racing.
Lukas Pöstlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe) wears the leaders yellow and blue jersey after his audacious attack add solo win yesterday.
He leads Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Victorious) by 12 seconds, with Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) third at 20 seconds.
Click below to read our full stage report and to see our photo gallery and the full results.
Bora are setting the pace in the peloton to control the break but they will perhaps be happy to see a two-rider attack go clear.
Bora will be hoping the sprinters' teams also help with the work.
The race is on a gradual climb through the forests, with the first categorised climb, the Cat 4 Côte d'Allègre coming up after 30km of the stage.
Mads Pedersen and Santiago Buitrago crash.
#Dauphiné 🇫🇷Two courageous riders are leading stage 3 in the breakaway, one of them is @LoicVliegen 👍 pic.twitter.com/K6z2uf4Qy9June 1, 2021
Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) et Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) have extended their lead out to 3:00.
This is Pedersen crash.
Sadly Mads Pedersen has quit the race.
Mads Pedersen was perhaps the favourite for today's finish.
The break of the day: Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert).
Omer Goldstein was the first to the top of the Côte d'Allègre.
140km to go
The race has settled now, with the break trying to extend their lead.
😢 @Mads__Pedersen has had to abandon the #Dauphiné after a crash in the opening KMs. He was back up on his feet quickly after the crash but the decision was made for him to stop racing. That's all the info we've got right now so we'll provide another update when we know more. pic.twitter.com/saf23jS7TYJune 1, 2021
The two leaders covered 34.5 kilometers in the first hour of the race after a hilly first hour.
🏁 130km2️⃣🚴🏻♂️ June 1, 2021
The race is on the road to the intermediate sprint in Viverols.
Monday's stage was raced aggressively with even Ineos Grenadiers up front and looking for opportunities.
Geraint Thomas admitted he was even ready to try his hand in the final sprint.
Click below to read the full story.
With Pedersen out of the race, today's stage is wide open, with a number of sprinters likely winners. They include Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain), Alexander Kristoff (UAE) and Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck).
The Dauphine is Jakobsen's first WorldTour race since his terrible crash at the Tour de Pologne.
The Deceuninck-QuickStep team are expected to ride for him in Saint-Haon-le-Vieux today.
“It is a very special feeling to come out of this briefing on the bus and to have heard all my teammates say '' today, we're going to ride for you ''. It's a very special day and it's a big step for me," Jakobsen told the official race website.
"I don't know if this will work, but I'll give it my all. In principle, I'm never nervous. And today, neither more nor less than usual, I feel good. Everything went pretty well for me on the first two stages. I know it will be nervous for everyone in the last two kilometers, but this is the race.
"The last 500 meters are a bit uphill, at 7%, although I'm more of a flat sprinter. But I'll try to beat Colbrelli and Kristoff. These will be the men to watch today. This is the only stage that suits me on this Dauphiné."
110km to go
Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) are still out front, their lead is up to 4:00.
Goldstein won the sprint in Viverols after 65km of racing.
🟢 Sprint intermédiaire à Viverols 🟢1️⃣ 🇮🇱Omer Goldstein, 10 pts, 3’’2️⃣ 🇧🇪@LoicVliegen, 6 pts, 2’’3️⃣ 🇩🇰@k_asgreen, 4 pts, 1’’#DauphinéJune 1, 2021
The peloton is keeping the break under control, with Bora doing a lot of the work.
“Sonny Colbrelli is very quick in the sprint and he can threaten me in the overall standings, especially if there is a small break at the finish," Pöstlberger told the race website.
"We will see. We also have a sprinter in the team, Michael Schwarzmann, we will be working for him. Our interests are the same, we have to control the race .”
100km to go
Here's Bora bossing the peloton.
The break is on the Côte des Limites climb. It's 3.7 km long with an average gradient of 5.5% and comes before he long descent off the plateau.
It peaks at an altitude of 1159m but the weather is warm and sunny today, with no risk of rain.
Goldstein leads the break over the top of the Col des Limites but the peloton has closed to the gap to 1:00.
Now it's time for 17km of descending.
The stage is a game of cat ands mouse.
The peloton has eased up and so Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) have regained ground.
65km to go
The gap has opened back up to 1:50.
As the kilometres tick down, the teams are gathering at the front to stay safe and avoid any crashes.
Chris Froome is up front but bumped hard with Michel Kwiatkowski.
Indeed, the gap to the break is back down to 1:00.
The riders are perhaps afraid of road furniture. There's a tailwind but no risk of echelons.
🏁 73 km2️⃣🚴🏻♂️ June 1, 2021
None of the big teams and overall contenders want to take any risks and so are riding to stay up front.
There are seven teams lined out across the road.
50km to go
The chase is on but Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) are also working hard to stay away.
It's comfortable on the wheels in the peloton but Ineos, Movistar, Groupama-FDJ, Bora-Hansgrohe, Jumbo-Visma and Israel Start-Up Nation are lined-up across the peloton.
Ineos are riding to protect Geraint Thomas and Tao Geoghegan Hart. They're lined out in a single file, on the left of the peloton.
The speed is high and so Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) lead by just 40 seconds.
The race could explode if or when the break is caught.
Tous derrière Wiwi ! 🚴🚴♂️🚴♂️🚴♂️🚴♂️🚴♂️🚴♂️ pic.twitter.com/pJ9Ekji3onJune 1, 2021
The gap to the break keeps riding and falling as the peloton chases them down.
35km to go
The road keeps turning left and right through small villages but the speed stays high.
The peloton passes through a litter zone and so drop their trash and bidons.
it's 25c and warm in the roads of France.
30km to go
Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) and Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) are refusing to give up.
Andrey Amador is leading Ineos in the peloton.
🚴🏻♂️ Le peloton semble ne pas vouloir rejoindre l'échappée trop tôt et contrôle l'écart. ⏱🚴🏻♂️ The peloton doesn't seem to want to catch the breakaway too early and controls the gap. ⏱#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/YOp5c2cfHPJune 1, 2021
Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) jumps away alone. But the peloton can see him.
Omer Goldstein (Israel Start-Up Nation) is back in the peloton.
Jasper Stuyven (Trek) is brought back up from the rear of the bunch. He is a real contender for the sprint finish.
25km to go
Loïc Vliegen (Intermarché-Wanty Gobert) is hanging out front like a carrot for the peloton.
Gruppo compatto and the speed is up!
The riders are on a fast wide descent and so spin out their gears. They're travelling at 85km/h!
Cofidis are chasing to bring back Martin after a crash.
Barguil also crashed.
The crash was a on a straight section of the road when the speed was hard.
up front the tension and the speed is even higher.
10km to go
Deceuninck is riding for Jakobsen and the team is up front.
Guillaume Martin is stuck in the team cars trying to get back on.
Nathan Haas is helping him, they're behind 15 team cars and so have work to do.
No one team has taken charge of the sprint for now.
The stage is on wide fast roads before a turn right and then more technical roads, with rising finish in the last 2km.
Guillaume Martin and his Cofidis teammates got out of jail and are back in the peloton.
UAE are up front for Kristoff.
The peloton is lined out and Guillaume Martin is at the back on the wrong side of some splits.
Ineos don't have a sprinter but are still up front to protect Thomas.
The roads sweeps right and lines out the peloton.
4km to go
Ineos are leading it out.
Colbrelli is in the green points jersey but is up there for the sprint.
Amador moves of the front, tired, his job is done.
Now the roads are narrower. Van Baarle takes over for Ineos.
The road starts to rise.
Here comes Deceuninck, while Bora protect Postlberger's lead.
Wow! A touch of wheels and shoulders almost causes a crash.
Marco Haller leads it out for Bahrain.
There's a tailwind. It will be fast.
Kwaito on the front to protest Thomas.
Here we go!
Colbrelli leads it out and wins it!
Alex Aranburu of Astana kicked very early and Colbrelli jumped on his wheel, then surged past him in the final 150m to then win with his arms in the air.
Brandon McNulty came from behind to take third place.
He sprinted on the tops of his brake levers but had the power and speed.
This is the top ten for the stage:
1 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious 03:56:36
2 Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech
3 Brandon McNulty (USA) UAE Team Emirates
4 Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo
5 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Bora-Hansgrohe
6 Clement Venturini (Fra) AG2R Citroën Team
7 Carlos Barbero (Spa) Team Qhubeka Assos
8 Clément Russo (Fra) Team Arkea-Samsic
9 Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal
10 Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck-QuickStep
This is the general classification after stage 3:
1 Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 12:35:08
2 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious 00:00:02
3 Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech 00:00:18
4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 00:00:20
5 Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck-QuickStep 00:00:23
Here's Sonny Colbrelli enjoying his win.
You can see McNulty in the background. He came from around 10 places back but found a way through and surged up the riding finish in pursuit of Colbrelli.
Another 30/40 metres and he would have perhaps caught him and won.
This is the general classification top 10 after stage 3:
1 Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 12:35:08
2 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious 0:00:02
3 Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech 0:00:18
4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:20
5 Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:00:23
6 Quentin Pacher (Fra) B&B Hotels p/b KTM 0:00:24
7 Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:24
8 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers 0:00:24
9 Ilan Van Wilder (Bel) Team DSM 0:00:24
10 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Jumbo-Visma 0:00:24
There were no gaps in the peloton at the finish and so the GC remains close.
Postlberger was there and so kept the leader's yellow and blue jersey by 2 seconds.
Top work from the team today at the #Dauphine.Hitting the front when we needed to - to ensure @GeraintThomas86 @richie_porte and @taogeoghegan all finished on the same time as the stage winner. pic.twitter.com/Tk9RpSyx0pJune 1, 2021
Fabio Jakobsen wasn't up there but that finish was far from a pure sprinter's finish.
🥉 It's a 3rd place for @BrandonMcNult on stage three of the #Dauphiné 🇫🇷 in Saint-Haon-Le-Vieux!#UAETeamEmirates #RideTogether pic.twitter.com/io6Zjks0DjJune 1, 2021
Here comes Sonny!
It was a day for the sprinters but also a bad day for Mads Pedersen. The former world champion crashed hard early in the stage and had to quit the race.
Colbrelli spoke briefly in Italian and English ater his win.
"After two second places, I really wanted to take a beautiful win. I can thank my team, they worked perfectly," he said.
"The final kilometre was very hard. [Michał] Kwiatkowski pulled really hard until the last 300m. Then [Alex] Aranburu went very strong, I followed his wheel and it worked well for me."
Thanks to his two second places and today's victory, Colbrelli keeps the green points jersey.
Lukas Postlberger (Bora) kept the yellow and blue jersey.
To see our growing photo gallery of the stage, read our full report and see the full results, click below.
Thanks for joining us for our full live coverage from the Criterium du Dauphine.
We'll be back on Wednesday with full coverage of stage 4 as the race heads to the mountains.
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