Criterium du Dauphine 2015: Peter Kennaugh wins stage one

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Criterium du Dauphine 2015: British champion Peter Kennaugh foils sprinters to win stage one

Team Sky man attacks late to claim solo victory and first yellow jersey

British champion Peter Kennaugh (Team Sky) foiled the peloton to win the first stage of the Criterium du Dauphine and claim the first yellow jersey.

In the red, white and blue stripes the Manxman jumped clear of the peloton in a small group on the final climb, and kicked again inside the final two kilometres to solo to victory.

Peter Kennaugh attacked late to win stage one of the 2015 Criterium du Dauphine (pic: Sirotti)

In-form Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida) and Kennaugh’s former Team Sky team-mate Edvald Boasson Hagen were among the fast men foiled by the late attack as the 25-year-old claimed his first win of the season.

What had looked set to be a gentle opening to the traditional pre-Tour de France form finder proved to be anything but the peloton, with a big crash disrupting the race after just five kilometres.

Gert Dockx (Lotto-Soudal) ledt the race with a broken collarbone and elbow, and it took some time for a break to form in the immediate aftermath.

Maarten Wynants (LottoNL-Jumbo), Romaim Guillemois (Team Europcar), Daniel Teklehaimanot (MTN-Qhubeka) and Bjorn Thurau (Bora-Argon 18) were the men to eventually go clear up the road.

Though afforded a generous advantage, the move was never much of a threat to the peloton as Teklehaimanot did enough to earn the first King of the Mountains jersey.

Thurau kicked on alone as their advantage tumbled on the final climb, ridding himself of his former companions as Daniel Oss (BMC Racing), in typically aggressive style, led the chase behind.

A group of four riders, Kennaugh among them, caught up with Oss before they in turn to reeled Thurau back in inside the final ten kilometres.

A heated chase behind from the sprint teams was enough to reel the rest of the group in but with Kennaugh having struck out solo inside the final two kilometres, his attack proved to be perfectly-timed.

Kennaugh pulled on the yellow jersey thanks to his stage one win (pic: Sirotti)

The lead was never a commanding one, but it was enough for him to slow down and savour the moment as he hit the final straight.

Modolo led the sprinters across the line two seconds later, with world number one Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) the best placed GC man, finishing inside the top ten.

Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) both finished safely in the peloton too but, for now at least, the yellow jersey belongs to Froome’s team-mate.

Almost a year to the date since his last victory, at the Tour of Austria, the Manxman boasts a six-second overall lead ahead of stage two.

Criterium du Dauphine 2015: stage one – result

1) Peter Kennaugh (GBR) – Team Sky – 3.06.51hrs
2) Sacha Modolo (ITA) – Lampre-Merida +2”
3) Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR) – MTN-Qhubeka – ST
4) Tiesj Benoot (BEL) – Lotto-Soudal
5) Simon Gerrans (AUS) – Orica-GreenEDGE
6) Nacer Bouhanni (FRA) – Cofidis
7) Jay McCarthy (AUS) – Tinkoff-Saxo
8) Alejandro Valverde (ESP) – Movistar
9) Samuel Dumoulin (FRA) – Ag2r-La Mondiale
10) Cyril Gautier (FRA) – Team Europcar

General classification

1) Peter Kennaugh (GBR) – Team Sky – 3.06.41hrs
2) Sacha Modolo (ITA) – Lampre-Merida +6”
3) Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR) – MTN-Qhubeka +8”
4) Tiesj Benoot (BEL) – Lotto-Soudal +12”
5) Simon Gerrans (AUS) – Orica-GreenEDGE – ST
6) Nacer Bouhanni (FRA) – Cofidis
7) Jay McCarthy (AUS) – Tinkoff-Saxo
8) Alejandro Valverde (ESP) – Movistar
9) Samuel Dumoulin (FRA) – Ag2r-La Mondiale
10) Cyril Gautier (FRA) – Team Europcar

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