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Tour de France champion Bernal abandons Dauphine

Reigning Tour de France champion Egan Bernal did not start the penultimate stage of the Criterium du Dauphine, a 153.5-km mountain trek from Ugine to Megeve, on Saturday due to reported back pain.

The Colombian was seventh overall after losing a bit of ground to leader Slovenian Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) and second-placed Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) in the two previous stages.

“We can confirm Egan Bernal will not … start this morning in Ugine,” Bernal’s Team Ineos said on Twitter.

Ineos have been far from their best on the Dauphine, the main warm-up race for the Tour, with Bernal appearing to struggle and four-time Tour champion Chris Froome being distanced in the mountains.

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