Criterium du Dauphine 2024 – Stage 1 Preview

There are not many chances for the sprinters this edition. Therefore, I’d assume they get their first shot tomorrow at the stage win and temporarily the leader’s jersey.


The first 50 km are fairly hilly. The smart move for the teams with a sprinter is to let a TV-breakaway get away before these climbs begin.

The riders head counterclockwise before two laps near Saint-Pourcain-Sur-Sioule. The climbs you see near the end are not really a threat to the sprinters.


Not a very wide road to be fair. And slightly downhill, the speeds will be extremely high. With 250m left, there is a slight bend to the right. It will surely have atleast one or two who miscalculated the run in tab the brakes and see their chances gone.

The round bendsslightly towards the left in the closing 50 meters, which means you want to be on that left side for the shortest distance.

It more or less means you want to be the first through the bend and attack inside your lead-out rider (towards the barriers on the left side of the road) and have him block anyone trying to open up early on your right side. That leaves the sprinters a minuscule moment to overtake you and they must make longer ground than you.


It will rain a bit tomorrow and the sun will shine a bit too. I notice a tailwind sprint, that finale is going to be as quick as a wink.


Mads Pedersen – he must start as one of the two favorites. It isn’t a sprint that suits him an awful lot. Still, with Kirsch and Gibbons, he starts with fantastic help. I’d be surprised if he doesn’t finish in the top-3.

Sam Bennett – the second favorite. He was very impressive in 4 Jours de Dunkerque, especially the Cassel stage was impressive from my perspective. Godon and and Boassen Hagen isn’t as good as Kirsch and Gibbons but their fourth and fifth riders looks better. Will they take the front too soon? It is a fairly inexperienced sprint train.

Milan Menten – top-3 should be the goal.

Emil Liepins – top-5.

Jensen Plowright – top-5.

Who will win?

I will take a win for Mads Pedersen despite the short sprint train.

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