The transition from California to Europe and into the Dauphine had its ups and downs, so today was nice to stop thinking and start feeling the fire of racing again. And a prologue was a great way to do that.
While I don’t remember my last prologue, I do remember my first Dauphine back in 2009. I had a strong performance then, so today I thought back to that and channeled the feelings and energy from then.
Seven and half minutes is a painful effort, but it is over so quickly that it’s important to get into a good mental place. I had a plan of attack—-there were a couple of corners that needed a little braking and speed scrubbing but otherwise it was quite fast and not too technical.
As always at this distance, the margins were small and every second counted. I was happy to be on the fast side of milliseconds to get into the top 10, especially considering the stacked field, most of whom are honing their TDF form.
The Dauphine is always extra challenging because it factors into pre-TDF build-up and the crazy team selection process. Additionally, it’s a time where many riders are negotiating contracts for the coming year. I am sure these dynamics will factor in during the week ahead and make an already physically daunting race a hard-fought battle every day.