/ Cycling

Team Sky take Bradley Wiggins to brink of victory

Updated: Saturday, 09 Jun 2012 15:30

Bradley Wiggins is one stage away from overall victory in the Dauphine de Libere
Bradley Wiggins is one stage away from overall victory in the Dauphine de Libere

Bradley Wiggins will wear the race leader's yellow jersey into the final stage of the Criterium du Dauphine after a commanding performance from Team Sky today.

The sixth stage of the race into Morzine was won by Moviestar's Nairo Quintana with Cadel Evans taking second place after staging a late break.

Wiggins finished fourth to extend his lead at the top of the overall standings to one minute 20 seconds and further enhance his credentials as a Tour de France contender.

Team Sky put on a masterclass on the final climb of the day - the Col de Joux-Plane - and now have three riders in the top four.

Michael Rogers jumped into second place with Christopher Froome behind Evans in fourth.

"The Dauphine isn't over yet but we've done the hardest part. It should be ok tomorrow but we never know. It's too early to say that I've won," said Wiggins, who won the Dauphine last year.

Team Sky's assault on the Col de Joux-Plane, one of the steepest climbs in the Alps, was led by Edvald Boasson Hagen, who set a searing tempo before Richie Porte took over.

By the summit, the peloton had been reduced to just 10 as first Vincenzo Nibali and then Tony Martin dropped off the pace. Four of them - Wiggins, Porte, Froom and Rogers - were in Team Sky colours.

Quintana and then Evans broke away on the fast descent into Morzine but the dominant Team Sky train carried Wiggins home in fourth place and in control of the race.

"That's what we've trained for," Wiggins said on www.letour.fr.

"We've done particular things, we've trained as a group for a very long time, that's what we've done in Tenerife: three or four guys riding uphill together like that, so it was nice to be all up there today."

Andy Schleck from Radioshack pulled out of the race during the 167.5km stage due to injuries from Thursday's time trial crash.

Tomorrow's final stage takes the riders on the 124.5km route from Morzine to Chatel and up another five categorised climbs.

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