Criterium du Dauphine 2014: observations ahead of the Tour de France

Alberto Contador impresses as Chris Froome falters - and what now for Adam Yates?

Almost a forgotten man among the main GC contenders, Jurgen van den Broeck delivered a timely reminder of his abilities as he bagged the final spot on the podium.

One of few riders able to keep tabs on Chris Froome’s constant attacking on stage two, though his challenge did eventually fade, van den Broeck then impressed on the climb to Courchevel too, finishing fifth having been in the break.

Jurgen van den Broeck looked to be enjoying himself as he returned to form ahead of the Tour de France (pic: Sirotti)

His return from injury this season, having crashed out of last year’s Tour de France, has been low key. But with ambitions to better his two career fourth places at the Tour, his return to form could not have come at a better time.

The reminder of his climbing ability on the Col du Beal was encouraging for both his team and the many fans who have been keen to see him return from injury.

His Tour hopes will certainly be boosted if he can repeat the feats next month.

Bettering his two fourth places will be a tough ask, but his first WorldTour podium in two years – and only the second of his career – show he is at least capable of sticking with the GC men on the tough climbs and sealing a good overall placing.

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