Criterium du Dauphine 2016: Thibaut Pinot wins stage six; Chris Froome extends lead

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Criterium du Dauphine 2016: Thibaut Pinot wins stage six; Chris Froome extends lead

Frenchman beats Romain Bardet to win Queen Stage, as Froome stretches lead with late attack

Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) won the queen stage of the Criterium du Dauphine as race leader Chris Froome (Team Sky) extended his overall advantage with a late attack.

Pinot – who entered the race in good form but found himself well down the GC standings – beat fellow Frenchman Romain Bardet (Ag2r-La Mondiale) after attacking inside the final ten kilometres.

Froome, meanwhile, snaffled a handful of seconds on the summit finish with a late attack to distance Alberto Contador (Tinkoff) and Richie Porte (BMC Racing).

Bardet was the biggest threat to Froome’s lead as he forged clear with Pinot but the Team Sky man will take a 21-second lead into the final stage.

Thibaut Pinot beat fellow Frenchman Romain Bardet to win stage six of the Criterium du Dauphine (pic: Sirotti)

Ag2r-La Mondiale rode a clever tactical race for Bardet, putting three men up the road in the day’s large breakaway – Jan Bakelants, Mickael Cherel and Ben Gastauer – where Pinot was also present.

Attacks were frequent further back too, with Contador looking to prise back time overall after losing the yellow jersey on stage five as he and team-mate Jasper Hansen instigated a strong move on the Madeleine.

Dayer Quintana (Movistar), Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha), Bjorn Thurau (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and Fabio Aru (Astana) followed Contador but the move – as dangerous as it potentially looked – proved to be short-lived.

Team Sky did the work to bring it back – their efforts also significantly stripping the peloton to size on the Madeleine’s fierce slopes.

Riders were also dropped from the breakaway, which now numbered 17 but still boasted the three Ag2r-La Mondiale men and Pinot.

Bardet was one of a number of riders to attack the diminished peloton, with his move sticking and he and Aru both managed to latch onto the day’s break.

With a two-minute advantage growing to more than three minutes at one point, that left Bardet as the virtual leader but Team Sky continued to set a steady pace behind.

Aru was dropped from the break and continued to go backwards, straight out the back of what was left of the peloton, however.

Bardet instigated the race-winning attack, after his Ag2r-La Mondiale team-mates had opened up that gap with only Pinot able to follow his move.

It could have been a serious threat to the yellow jersey had they both worked together, but Bardet’s decision to attack Pinot only angered his fellow Frenchman.

The FDJ man chased back on but refused to work until passing Bardet to bag the stage win.

Further back, Dan Martin attacked the GC group, with Froome joining him to put time into Contador and Porte and ensure the Team Sky man wears the yellow jersey into the final stage.

Criterium du Dauphine 2016: stage seven – result

1) Thibaut Pinot (FRA) – FDJ – 4.24.16hrs
2) Romain Bardet (FRA) – Ag2r-La Mondiale – ST
3) Daniel Martin (IRL) – Etixx-QuickStep +1.04
4) Chris Froome (GBR) – Team Sky +1.07
5) Louis Meintjes (RSA) – Lampre-Merida +1.15
6) Alberto Contador (ESP) – Tinkoff – ST
7) Diego Rosa (ITA) – Astana +1.17
8) Adam Yates (GBR) – Orica-GreenEDGE – ST
9) Julian Alaphilippe (FRA) – Etixx-QuickStep +1.21
10) Richie Porte (AUS) – BMC Racing – ST

General classification

1) Chris Froome (GBR) – Team Sky – 25.50.22hrs
2) Richie Porte (AUS) – BMC Racing +21”
3) Romain Bardet (FRA) – Ag2r-La Mondiale – ST
4) Daniel Martin (IRL) – Etixx-QuickStep +30”
5) Alberto Contador (ESP) – Tinkoff +35”
6) Julian Alaphilippe (FRA) – Etixx-QuickStep +56”
7) Adam Yates (GBR) – Orica-GreenEDGE +1.02
8) Diego Rosa (ITA) – Astana +1.18
9) Louis Meintjes (RSA) – Lampre-Merida +1.35
10) Thibaut Pinot (FRA) – FDJ +2.12

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