2016 Tour de France runner-up Romain Bardet (AG2R) is eager to get back to racing at the Critérium du Dauphiné.
“I have not raced since the Liège-Bastogne-Liège (April 23rd), and I am looking forward to lining up to race at the Critérium du Dauphiné.
“The training camp in the Sierra Nevada (May 11 to 27) went well except for Mikaël Chérel’s hard crash, but I hope to find him riding next to me again very soon.
“In Spain we rode 1300 km, and climbed 27,000 m. This camp came at an important part of the season, both in terms of the quality of the work that we did and the good atmosphere that prevailed throughout the group of riders.
“The Critérium du Dauphiné is an important race, the last big meeting before the Tour de France. Last year it was a great experience taking second place behind Chris Froome in the overall classification after a tense final. But it was also tinged with regrets on that penultimate stage, where just a few more seconds in that breakaway could have resulted in a more striking performance.
“As with every year, the level of riders at the race will be very high, and the 2017 route is demanding. Every day will be strategic and it will be important not to miss the moves.
“For the AG2R LA MONDIALE team, it is an important race because it is disputed on home turf, especially with the finish at the Motte Servolex where our service course is located.
“This week will be an ideal time to confirm the team’s increase in power and performance ahead of the Tour de France, and achieve significant results”.