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Froome off to flyer at Criterium du Dauphine

ESPN staff
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Chris Froome powered through the second half of the stage to win © Getty Images
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Chris Froome won the time trial on stage one of the Criterium du Dauphine as the defending champion was eight seconds quicker than Alberto Contador.

The reigning Tour de France champion clocked a time of 13 minutes and 13 seconds on the 10.4-kilometre course in Lyon.

"I don't think it was necessarily the objective to take the yellow jersey today on such a short, flat time trial but I couldn't be happier with the result," Froome said.

"I'm here to win the race and we're going to do everything we can. Obviously it's the most important to try and have the yellow jersey at the end of the race, not necessarily right now."

The Criterium du Dauphine is staged over eight days and is regarded as the warm-up event for the Tour de France, which begins on July 5.

Vincenzo Nibali had been the quickest rider at the intermediate split at the top of the climb. However, the 2013 Giro d'Italia champion ended the day in eighth place and 13 seconds behind Froome.

Contador set the benchmark, but the Spaniard saw his time being beaten by Froome as the Team Sky rider powered through the second half of the stage to take the yellow jersey.

"The Dauphine this year is really hard right from the opening stages. I think tomorrow again we can expect a really big race in the mountains," Froome added.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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