- Associated Press - Sunday, June 8, 2014

LYON, France (AP) - British rider Chris Froome geared up for the Tour de France by winning the first stage of the Criterium du Dauphine on Sunday.

Froome won the eight-stage race last year. He completed the 10.4-kilometer time trial around Lyon in 13 minutes, 13 seconds.

“I’m pretty much where I was last year, if not a little bit better,” Froome told the event’s website. “I’m very, very happy with my performance today. I didn’t think I’d do so well in such a short and flat time trial. I’m definitely here to try and win the race overall.”

Spaniard Alberto Contador, a two-time Tour de France champion, finished second, eight seconds behind Froome. Bob Jungels took third, nine seconds back, and Andrew Talansky placed fourth, 11 seconds off the pace.

“My time is OK. For me, the last part was hard,” Contador said. “I knew there would be a strong head wind to finish. It made the race very hard.”

“I didn’t want to take any useless risk in the downhill as I knew that a motorbike had crashed in the morning, so I feared some oil on the road. The most important for me was not to crash.”

The second stage on Monday is a 156-kilometer trek from Tarare to Col du Beal.

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