Chris Froome is set to return to the Criterium du Dauphine as part of his preparation for the Tour de France.
The six-time Grand Tour winner recently completed a second training stint in Tenerife and has pronounced himself happy with his form ahead of his fifth race outing of the year.
With three victories at the Dauphine already on his palmares, Froome has often used the prestigious event as a final build-up race to the Tour de France. He will be supported at the Dauphine by Vasil Kiryienka, Michal Kwiatkowski, Gianni Moscon, Wout Poels, Ian Stannard and Dylan van Baarle.
“This approach and build-up to July is something we’ve tried and tested quite a few times over the years now. Our camp went really well, and as always at the second camp in Tenerife I start to feel a lot more ready for racing. Now I’m looking forward to pinning on some numbers at the Dauphine,” said Froome.
“It’s hard to say where I’m going to be, given I haven’t done much racing recently, but I’d like to be there fighting for the overall win at the Dauphine. The Tour group as a whole is moving forward and looking really good and ready for the next couple of months ahead. So hopefully we’ll have a really strong outing at the Dauphine as well.
“I think it’s a pretty good, well balanced route. There are a few lumpy days, a time trial and then some big mountain days. We’ll definitely get a good gauge of where we’re at after doing this Dauphine as there’s a bit of everything there.”
Froome’s Tour build-up is markedly different to a 2018 season which saw him battling hard across three weeks at the Giro d’Italia – eventually emerging successful.
“It was quite nice in a way watching the Giro on the TV and actually not racing. Also remembering my feelings coming out of the Giro last year – it’s so different to how I feel right now. Hopefully I’ll be a lot fresher now coming into this next block and more ready to race, as opposed to being on the back foot trying to recover from the Giro.”