Dan Martin will lead UAE Team Emirates at the Critérium du Dauphiné which runs from June 9 to 16, looking for another good performance at the Tour de France dress rehearsal. The Irishman finished third overall in 2016 and 2017, and fourth overall last year in addition to winning a stage.
Martin, who will be racing for the first time since Liège-Bastogne-Liège in April, will be supported by Vegard Stake Laengen (Nor), Cristian Muñoz (Col), Simone Petilli (Ita), Edward Ravasi (Ita), Rory Sutherland (Aus) and Oliviero Troia (Ita).
The route of the French World Tour race is quite varied. It includes two hilly stages, two stages suitable for sprinters, an individual time trial of 26.1 kilometres and the final two days in the high mountains finishing up to Pipay and Champéry.
Martin said: “Dauphiné is a race I always enjoy. Racing on the French roads against a high level competition is the perfect preparation for the Tour de France.
“Training has gone well and I feel good although I’m not sure on my expectations having not raced since Liege-Bastogne-Liege, so it is always an unknown how the first race back will go. The aim is to get a good weeks racing in the legs and to continue building towards July.
“I’ve performed well in the last few years at the race, so I am just aiming to enjoy the race and hope the legs are there to be aggressive at some point in the week.”