The 75th edition will take place between 4-11 June.
One of the most important and prestigious events of the season, the Critérium du Dauphiné has changed in recent years from a race that had a bit of something for everyone to one heavily tilted towards the climbers and the puncheurs, and this year won’t be any different.
The first few days will be ideal for the explosive riders, advantaged by the many short and sharp climbs sprinkled on the course, but they will put on the table also one big opportunity for the GC contenders in the form of a 31.1km undulating individual time trial held between Cours and Belmont-de-la-Loire.
Some heavy climbing awaits in the second part of the week, Col des Aravis, Col de la Madeleine, Col du Mollard, and the mighty Col de la Croix de Fer (13.1km, 6.2%) before the final battle of the race on a special day. For the first time since 2000, La Bastille (1.8km, 14.2%) – where Bernard Hinault triumphed twice, in 1977 and 1979 – is back in the Dauphiné, and the expectations are high, especially as it will be tackled at the end of a demanding and leg-sapping stage featuring five other ascents, including the Col du Granier and Col de Porte.
Julian Alaphilippe will return at the start of the race for the first time since 2020, and the Frenchman – winner of a pair of stages and the KOM jersey here at his previous participations – will lead a strong Soudal Quick-Step team. Andrea Bagioli, Rémi Cavagna, Dries Devenyns, French Champion Florian Sénéchal, Tour of Oman runner-up Mauri Vansevenant and Ethan Vernon – a stage winner this season at the Tour de Romandie – are the riders joining the two-time World Champion for the eight-day World Tour race.
“Most of the riders start their preparation towards the Tour de France after the altitude training camp we just had. Julian is back for the first time since the Classics, while Mauri is returning from injury. Our biggest goal for next week is to take a stage win, and in Ethan we have a guy who can get over some of the climbs and also be fast in the sprint. Rémi is also motivated for the individual time trial, so we can be confident in our chances of doing a good Dauphiné”, said Soudal Quick-Step sports director Wilfried Peeters.
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