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Aranburu sprints to third place as Lutsenko maintains second on GC

It was a fast finish on stage 5 of the Critérium du Dauphiné which saw Alex Aranburu sprint to third place to continue his run of top ten finishes on all four of the road stages so far.

After an impressive one-two on the stage four time trial, Alexey Lutsenko and Ion Izagirre retained their places on the General Classification with second and fourth place respectively.

It was a battle for the breakaway and after a few reshuffles at the front of the race, eight riders went clear to form the breakaway of the day. The peloton kept them close and eventually brought them back approaching the final 40 kilometres.

Despite further attacks, the reduced peloton remain intact as they reached the technical final five kilometres until Getaint Thomas launched what would be the winning move with one kilometre to go.

Thomas held on to a narrow advantage to take the win and behind, Aranburu launched a strong sprint to cross the line in third place, despite his crash in the time trial.

“After the crash yesterday the idea was to see how I felt today. At the beginning of the stage, I didn’t feel good at all and I suffered a lot. But then in the middle of the race, when the race started moving a little again when there were more attacks,  I tried to be in the group as I was feeling a little better. And then on the last climb, I took things easy. I started a bit behind and little by little, I managed to get ahead and was still in the first group heading into the finale. I was well placed in the sprint and in the end, I’m happy with third place today,” said Aranburu.

With three stages remaining, the mountains continue on stage 6 with four tough climbs scheduled in the final 50 kilometres.

Race profile

Critérium du Dauphiné

Stage 5: Saint-Chamond › Saint-Vallier

Top 3: 1. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers), 2. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain – Victorious), 3. Alex Aranburu (Astana – Premier Tech)

Astana – Premier Tech top 3:  3. Alex Aranburu

Photo: Getty Images