Julien Alaphilippe (Quickstep) won stage 4 of the Criterium du Dauphine, winning the mountain top sprint ahead of Dan Martin (UAE Emirates) and Geraint Thomas (Team Sky).
The 4th stage of the Criterium du Dauphine got off to a rapid start, with the peloton averaging well over 50km/h during the first hour of racing. This saw it take more than 60km before the break of the day formed, when it did, our African Team had Edvald Boasson Hagen present in the move.
Boasson Hagen was joined by 7 others as they rode away, to a 4’30” lead over the peloton. The 17km Col du Mont Noir climb was the main fixture on the route today, and it was here were the break and peloton both started to distance riders. Over the top Dario Cataldo (Astana) was the lone leader, while the peloton chased 3’00” behind with our Norwegian stuck between.
The stage concluded with the 5km climb to Lans-en-Vercors. Cataldo started the climb 2’00” ahead of the 60 rider strong group, that included Boasson Hagen, Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier and Serge Pauwels for us. Despite his lead, Cataldo was caught, albeit with just 300m to go, as Alaphilippe sprinted to victory. Ghebreigzabhier, our neo pro, was our strongest on the day, losing contact with 1.5km to go and finishing in 28th, 1 minute down on Alaphilippe.
Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier – Rider
Today’s stage was really hard, the first 80km was very fast when there was many attacks. I still tried to save some energy in that section for the climbs later. I was okay in the big climb, also trying to save energy but it started getting hard 2km from the top but I stayed with the group. On the final climb, my legs were getting tired with 3km to go, I dropped just after 2km to go and finished about 1 minute behind the winner. It was a hard stage today but a good race.