Wout van Aert sprinted to victory on the first stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné. For the Belgian Champion it’s his fourth win of the season as well as his fourth win in the Dauphiné. The victory is a promising sign of his form after a 6-week break and looking towards the Tour de France.
With his victory in Beauchastel, van Aert also secured the first place in GC and the points classification of the 8-day stage race.
Wout van Aert:
"I was well positioned for the sprint. After Christophe (Laporte) went to the limit to catch Cavagna, I chose the wheel of the Ineos guys. I was riding in an ideal position to deliver a good sprint. It wasn't easy to stay ahead of Ethan Hayter, but I did. I am thrilled with this victory. The team kept me in front all day. I felt good on the climbs, also because of the excellent teamwork. In the spring, I was not always satisfied with my sprint, so I have put a lot of work into it in recent weeks. It gives a good feeling when it pays off immediately."
“Hopefully, I can keep the leader's jersey for a few days and then hand it over to Primoz (Roglic). The coming stages suit me, so we'll see how far I can get. It's not a given, because the course is difficult everyday. Today confirmed that we are on the right track concerning our Tour preparation. Hopefully we can continue that line in the coming days."