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Minutes after the overall favorites at the Critérium du Dauphiné did battle with each other in the first major GC clash of the race on the Col de Porte, riders and spectators alike were assailed by a different adversary: the weather.
Shortly after Primoz Roglic crossed the line to win Thursday’s stage 2, what had been moderate rainfall turned into an intense hailstorm, pelting anyone caught outside on the pass in the Chartreuse Mountains. That included a large number of riders still making their way to the finish line.
Riders and fans took cover where they could to avoid the barrage of hailstones.
Not everyone managed to find cover before the precipitation took its toll. Tim Declercq (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) and Maxime Chevalier (B&B Hotels-Vital Concept) were left covered in welts.
Meanwhile, at the finish, the storm apparently proved too heavy for an inflatable roof over the podium ceremony.
Hopefully, the Dauphiné peloton will have a chance to recover with a good night sleep. After Wednesday’s grueling climb and sudden storm, the race continues Friday with a trip up the Col de Madeleine and another summit finish.