Criterium du Dauphine 2024 – Stage 2 Preview

We have the first of two uphill sprint finishes that can be hard to categorize. How difficult are they? How many riders will sprint for the win? Let’s try figuring it out.


2400 climbing meters more or less. Most of it towards the end.

The rides head southeast for most of the stage. Once they reach the finale, they head west.


24.9 km at 3.3%. It has two categorized climbs. The first being 7 km at 6%, that is usually too much for the sprinters. They reach a plateau with 17.5 km left and the next climb begins with 10.8 km left. It evens out, the two-percent-sector with 7 km left. Then, the last 3 km are merely 3.8%.


No rain expected. It is not the warmest of days either.

Here you have the wind for the last 25 km. A tailwind on the first climb should make it rather selective. But anyone hanging on there should be able to hang on for a long time, as the headwind on the second ramp will make it easier to sit on.


Juan Ayuso – he is quick on the line but I am not certain if he will sprint or not. We saw in Basque Country that he can be conservative when it comes to bunch sprints, so it is all about how thinned out the group will be. I can also imagine he has one eye on the time trial already. Still, the 2nd place result in a sprint in Tour de Romandie 2023 sticks to my mind. I think he can contest the top-5 but I think he may sit this one out.

Dorian Godon – this has become sort of his specialty. He loves a 4% sprint like few others (perhaps Mads Pedersen)… I actually think he can cling on tomorrow, as he already has some very strong results on similar difficulties this season, including top results in Catalunya and a stage win in Romandie.

Primoz Roglic – will he go for the sprint? You never really know. A few years ago, he would have started as the favorite but I don’t think that will be the case tomorrow. We have not had the chance to see his explosiveness on Bora-Hansgrohe, but I doubt it has disappeared during winter.

Remco Evenepoel – he has a good kick to him but he has talked himself down. I have not put my hopes up regarding him, I need to see him in the mountains to get a general idea of his current level.

Magnus Cort – the first half of the season has been filled with illness and injuries. His recent results in Tour of Norway gives me the feeling he is well on his way back and climbing well. His 11th on the toughest day to Gullingen is a clear sign that he will sprint for the win tomorrow. He also played lead-out man for Kristoff, meaning that he has come more to terms with bunch sprints. Tomorrow will be a reduced one.

Santiago Buitrago – he goes well in a sprint but I doubt it can become much more than a top-10 on these gradients.

Romain Gregoire – this is his territory. This is the finishes I’d expect him to be a name for the next ten years. His stage win in Basque Country was just the first of many WT wins coming to this young man. I’d expect him to fight for a top-3 tomorrow. But with Gaudu and Madouas on the team, who is their first choice?

Andreas Kron – with optimal preparation, he would be a genuine contender for a strong result. But 2024 has not been his year. A top-10.

Davide de Pretto – the young Italian goes well in this sorts of stages. Despite his small size, he does pack a fantastic sprint.

Mads Pedersen – I think this is too difficult for him.


I will go for Magnus Cort.

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