Criterium du Dauphine: Luke Rowe targets Tour de France spot

Luke Rowe represented Wales at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and finished sixth in the road race
Luke Rowe represented Wales at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and finished sixth in the road race

Luke Rowe is hoping his performance at the Criterium du Dauphine will earn him a place at the Tour de France.

The Welshman, 25, and his fellow Team Sky riders helped Peter Kennaugh take the lead on the first day of the eight-stage race, a precursor to the Tour.

"I've upped my game quite substantially this year and gone from strength to strength," Rowe said.

"I'm trying to keep that ball rolling race by race and do enough here to get selected for the Tour de France."

Team Sky are well placed at the Criterium, with Kennaugh setting the early pace and Team Sky team-mate Chris Froome crossing the line in 16th, 12 seconds behind.

"It's a great way to get the show on the road... Pete Kennaugh taking an individual win and taking the yellow jersey on the first day," Rowe said.

"I'm pretty good mates with him as well, so on a personal note it's great to see him at the front of the bike race.

"There's still seven days left of the race so we're going to have to play our cards on Monday and not do too much ahead of the time trial on Tuesday."

The opening stage of the Tour de France is on 4 July in Utrecht, with Rowe bidding to line up alongside the likes of Welsh compatriot Geraint Thomas, Ian Stannard, Froome and Kennaugh in the final Team Sky squad.

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