Bennett pipped during sprint finish in stage five of Critérium du Dauphiné
Irishman frustrated after he got boxed in during exciting finale to 201km stage
Wout van Aert, Team Jumbo-Vismarider, celebrates as he pips Bora-Hansgrohe rider Sam Bennett (right), to win the fifth stage of the Criterium du Dauphine in Voiron, France. Photograph: Anne-Christing Poujoulat/AFP/Getty
Sam Bennett ended stage five of the Critérium du Dauphiné frustrated on Thursday, going close to victory but coming up short after being boxed in during the final sprint.
The end of the 201 kilometre stage to Voiron was marked by a late attack by former world champion Philippe Gilbert (Deceuninck-QuickStep) and Edvald Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data).
Bennett’s Bora-Hansgrohe team was forced to chase but with its riders already fatigued after doing much of the work, he had only Shane Archbold for support.
The Kiwi was strong enough to bring Gilbert and Boasson Hagen back but his effort meant that he couldn’t lead out Bennett in the sprint. The Irishman’s rivals pounced and swamped him on the final corner, leaving him back in fifth place. He chased hard but while he was fastest inside the final 150 metres, he fell short of overtaking the day’s winner Wout Van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma).
“Unfortunately, it was not to be today,” Bennett said.
“The boys rode super well for me but the finish was super chaotic and earmarked by many attacks. I saw that [Julian] Alaphilippe was coming around the corner so I was a little bit boxed in for a second, but I managed to take second place. I am disappointed but I am grateful to the guys for working so hard to pull the break back.”
Meanwhile four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome is recovering following a near eight-hour operation in France. The British Team Ineos rider fell at high speed on Wednesday when doing reconnaissance of the time trial course, and suffered fractures to his femur, hip, elbow and ribs. Some of these were compound, or open, fractures, and he also suffered internal damage.
Froome will remain in intensive care for several days. His participation in next month’s Tour de France is out of the question, and it appears unlikely that he will return to racing this season.
He received some unexpected news when cycling’s world governing body the UCI announced on Thursday that Juan José Cobo, the Spanish winner of the 2011 Vuelta a España, had been found guilty of an anti-doping rule violation.
It said that these related to the use of a prohibited substance, and that the determination was “based on abnormalities from 2009 and 2011 detected in his Biological Passport”. It imposed a three-year period of ineligibility on the rider.
It said that it would not make further comments at this point in time. However Cobo looks set to lose his Vuelta title and, as Froome finished second overall, he stands to inherit the victory.
Critérium du Dauphiné, France (WorldTour)
Stage 5, Boën-sur-Lignon to Voiron: 1, Wout Van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 201 kilometres in 5 hours 34 secs; 2, S. Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe); 3, J. Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep); 4, L. Manzin (Vital Concept-B&B Hotel); 5, C. Venturini (AG2R La Mondiale); 6, E. Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data) all same time
Other Irish: 14, D. Martin (UAE Team Emirates) same time
General classification: 1, Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) 17 hours 28 mins; 2, D. Teuns (Bahrain-Merida) at 4 secs; 3, T. Van Garderen (EF Education First) at 6 secs; 4, J. Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team) at 7 secs; 5, W. Van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) at 20 secs; 6, S. Kruijswijk (Team Jumbo-Visma) at mins 24 secs
Irish: 13, D. Martin (UAE Team Emirates) at 1 min 13 secs; 109, S. Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) at 30 mins 19 secs
Points classification: 1, Wout Van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 82 pts; 2, E. Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data) 53; 3, S. Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) 47
Mountains classification: 1, Casper Pedersen (Team Sunweb) 18 pts; 2, M. Cort Nielsen (Astana Pro Team) 13; 3, J. Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) 12
Young riders classification: 1, Wout Van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma 1) at 7 hours 28 mins 20 secs; 2, N. Politt (Katusha-Alpecin 1 min 24 secs; 3, B. Lambrecht (Lotto Soudal) at 2 mins 25 secs
Teams classification: 1, EF Education First, 52 hours 27 mins 18 secs; 2, Astana Pro Team, at 14 secs; 3, Mitchelton-Scott, at 1 min 4 secs
Other: 14, UAE Team Emirates, at 18 mins 46 secs; 20, Bora-Hansgrohe, at 37 mins 2 secs