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Dauphiné (7) - Martin third time top 10, 12th in final GC

Dauphiné (7) - Martin third time top 10, 12th in final GC

The last stage of Critérium du Dauphiné (2.WT, 03-10/06) was a last tough ride in the Alps. In the battle for the early break, Marco Minnaard narrowly missed the connection with the leading group. Six riders formed the breakaway.

The peloton exploded towards Megève, where Guillaume Martin and Xandro Meurisse joined the favorites. On the final climb to Saint-Gervais Mont Blanc, Martin was still in the presence of the favorites at the foot. On the climb itself our 25-year-old French climber formed the chasing group on the yellow jersey. He finished 8th in the stage and moved up to a 12th place in the final classification. Xandro Meurisse was the first Belgian to finish as 18th in the stage.

Guillaume Martin:

" Last year I had a hard time in successive mountain stages. In this sense this Dauphiné was a good test with an eye on Le Tour. I took a step and felt better every day. Even today I could follow the favorites for a long time. That is fun. I already won races with steep uphill finishes. Here we had to survive four heavy mountain stages. And I was able to hold on! »

« In the time trials I lost time, but there are more positive than negative points to remember. In the Tour those time trials will be decisive, especially the team time trial. But the team has received new time trial bikes from Cube, which are more aerodynamic and with which we will perform better. That will be an improvement. But I will never become a Tony Martin. I weigh 55 kilos, so I have other qualities. »

Xandro Meurisse:

« I had some doubts after a hard day on Saturday. But thanks to the osteopath my back was good again today. I could do a strong job for Guillaume. In the last descent he asked me to bring him forward. I had to take some risks, but could put him in a good position at the foot of the final climb. My work was done, but I still managed to hang on for some time. »

« I am not a pure climber, but I can still perform decently in the mountains. I am satisfied that I have been able to play my role, and I also get motivation from that. I am glad because yesterday I was disappointed that I was not present in front. »

« In the first stage I finish top 10 and also in the second stage I was not far back. This is not bad at WorldTour level. I return home satisfied. Now I want to recover for three days before starting the Route d'Occitanie. On paper, the opposition should be slightly less, but I still expect a strong peloton. I hope to achieve a nice final classification. »

« Unfortunately I cannot start in Tour de France. The birth of a first child is something special, so I can not participate. That is a shame, because I could be at the start in top form. But I do not want to take a place from a team mate and then leave the Tour after two weeks. I absolutely want to be present at the birth. But I am convinced that the team will send a nice collective to the Tour. I hope that I can follow the last week of the Tour on television with a child in my arms.»

Stage 7 :
1. Adam Yates
2. Dani Navarro + 0:04
3. Romain Bardet + 0:09
8. Guillaume Martin + 0:28
18. Xandro Meurisse + 3:31
44. Thomas Degand + 10:48
67. Dion Smith + 18:28
75. Marco Minnaard + 19:28
83. Frederik Backaert + 21:03

Final GC :
1. Geraint Thomas
2. Adam Yates + 1:00
3. Romain Bardet + 1:47
12. Guillaume Martin + 5:54
38. Xandro Meurisse + 42:07
42. Thomas Degand + 45:51
59. Marco Minnaard + 1:03:57
87. Dion Smith + 1:26:06
100. Frederik Backaert + 1:40:30

Young riders classification :
1. Pierre Latour
2. Antwan Tolhoek + 1:16
3. Guillaume Martin + 1:49