Elia Viviani of Cannondale won the second stage of the Criterium du Dauphiné into Oyonnax today, after a hilly parcours had thinned the main field but failed to ship out the sprinters, who fought out the stage win. Green jersey Gianni Meersman (Omega Pharma - Quickstep) was second, and Tony Gallopin (Radioshack - Leopard) third.
On a day with six categorised climbs the pace was high at the start, with a stable break not forming until nearly an hour in. Thomas Damuseau (Argos - Shimano) went out for another crack at a win from the front, with José Mendes (NetApp - Endura), Rudy Molard (Cofidis) and Arnaud Gérard (Bretagne - Seche Environment) for company. Europcar, holding the race lead with David Veilleux, controlled the pace to ensure that the quartet were kept on a fairly tight rein.
The constant up and down parcours took its toll on some of the riders hoping to contest a sprint including Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ) and Thor Hushovd (BMC) distanced over the category 2 côte de Communal. With the break being reeled in Rudy Molard (Cofidis) made a break for freedom with 30km to go but he was only able to stay away for half of the remaining distance. Another Cofidis rider, Rein Taaramae, attempted to break free on the final descent into Oyonnax but his challenge faded under the flamme rouge and it was down to the sprinters to contest the win. Viviani took a lead-out from Meersman and came round him easily in the last 50 metres to take the stage win, with Gallopin taking the last podium slot.
David Veilleux stays in leader's jersey after finishing in the front group, with Meersman still second and Gallopin third. Meersman retains the points jersey, with Damuseau now top of the climbers competition. Gallopin wears the young rider's jersey.
1. VIVIANI Elia CANNONDALE 4h 39' 15" 2. MEERSMAN Gianni OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP st 3. GALLOPIN Tony RADIOSHACK LEOPARD st 4. JANSE VAN RENSBURG Reinardt TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO st 5. GESLIN Anthony FDJ st 6. FONSECA Armindo BRETAGNE - SECHE ENVIRONNEMENT st 7. TANKINK Bram BLANCO PRO CYCLING TEAM st 8. BARGUIL WARREN TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO st 9. FLECHA GIANNONI Juan Antonio VACANSOLEIL-DCM st 10. SULZBERGER Wesley ORICA GREENEDGE st 11. THOMAS Geraint SKY PROCYCLING st 12. MORENO FERNANDEZ Daniel KATUSHA TEAM st 13. VALVERDE Alejandro MOVISTAR TEAM st 14. VOSS Paul TEAM NETAPP-ENDURA st 15. MATE MARDONES Luis Angel COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS st 16. ROHREGGER Thomas RADIOSHACK LEOPARD st 17. KENNAUGH Peter SKY PROCYCLING st 18. NERZ Dominik BMC RACING TEAM st 19. FUGLSANG Jakob ASTANA PRO TEAM st 20. BODNAR Maciej CANNONDALE st
1. VEILLEUX David TEAM EUROPCAR 7h 56' 50" 2. MEERSMAN Gianni OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP + 01' 56" 3. GALLOPIN Tony RADIOSHACK LEOPARD + 01' 57" 4. BARGUIL WARREN TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO + 01' 57" 5. VALVERDE Alejandro MOVISTAR TEAM + 01' 57" 6. FUGLSANG Jakob ASTANA PRO TEAM + 01' 57" 7. FROOME Christopher SKY PROCYCLING + 01' 57" 8. PORTE Richie SKY PROCYCLING + 01' 57" 9. MADRAZO Angel MOVISTAR TEAM + 01' 57" 10. THOMAS Geraint SKY PROCYCLING + 01' 57"
Dave is a founding father of road.cc, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.