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The Critérium du Dauphiné (UCI World Tour Stage Race) is being staged during June. (7-14 June 2015.)
Luckily it is once again visiting the Roannais region, and our home-base, Perreux. Starting in Roanne and finishing in Montagny.
We’ll be watching it as it finishes this 3rd stage of a great precursor race to the Tour de France later this year.
The Critérium du Dauphiné (known as the Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré before 2010) is an annual cycling road race, run over eight stages in the Dauphiné region in France during the first half of June. The race was inaugurated in 1947 by a local newspaper, the Dauphiné Libéré, which gave its name to the event. For many years, organisation of the event was shared between the newspaper publishers and the Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO); in 2010, the newspaper ceded all organisational responsibility to the ASO, and the race’s name was abbreviated. Along with the Tour de Suisse, the Dauphiné is an important race in the lead-up to the Tour de France in July, and it is part of the UCI World Ranking calendar.
Because the Dauphiné is a mountainous area, the winners are often climbing specialists. Many climbs that are famous from the Tour de France – like the Mont Ventoux, the Col du Galibier or Col de la Chartreuse – appear often in the Dauphiné Libéré. All cyclists who have won the Tour de France five times have also won the Dauphiné Libéré.
The first Dauphiné Libéré was held in 1947 when Edouard Klabinski from Poland was the winner. Nello Lauredi, Luis Ocaña, Charly Mottet and Bernard Hinault share the record of the most wins, with three each
After the Second World War, as cycling recovered from a nearly universal five- or six-year break, the newspaper Dauphiné Libéré decided to create and organize a cycling stage race through the Dauphiné region. The race is set in June, just before the Tour de France. From its beginning this race was used as preparation for the Tour de France by French cyclists, including Louison Bobet and John Robic. It has also served as a test of both advanced equipment for the cyclists and for broadcast coverage, which is stressed in the mountainous region.
The current form of the Critérium is the consequence of a merger with the Circuit of the Six-Provinces-Dauphiné in 1969.