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Tuesday, 20 November, 2018

Have a nibble on 16-1 Vincenzo Nibali in Dauphine

Sky rider Geraint Thomas heads open-looking market

Vincenzo Nibali (left) finished second to Chris Froome in the Vuelta a Espana
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Starts 11.08am
Live on Eurosport 2 from 12.30pm Sunday

There will be a new name on the honour roll of the Criterium du Dauphine this year as a number of top riders have opted instead for next week's Tour de Suisse as their preferred Tour de France warm-up.

But even without the likes of last year's winner and runner-up Jakob Fuglsang and Richie Porte as well as Chris Froome, who is resting after his Giro d'Italia win, a competitive field line up for the 6.6km prologue in Valence.

Team Sky arrive without three-time winner Froome in their squad for the first time since 2011, but Geraint Thomas heads the betting for them.

The Welshman has not had the smoothest of seasons, and had to abandon Paris-Roubaix in April after crashing on the cobbles, but he should be stronger this week.

There is better value to be found, though, and Criterium veteran Vincenzo Nibali looks a fair bet in a weakened field.

The 33-year-old Italian has never finished higher than seventh in the Dauphine, which he did in 2014 before winning the Tour de France. But he has enjoyed a decent enough spring which saw him win Milan-San Remo.

Nibali is riding in the race for the first time since 2015 in preparation for his first Tour de France since that year.

Home hopes appear to lie with Romain Bardet. On the podium in the last two editions of the Tour de France and the 2016 Dauphine, Bardet's chances are boosted by the absence of Froome and he is a strong contender.

Dan Martin is the highest finisher from last year competing having finished third in 2017, though he arrived in better form that year.

Adam Yates, whose twin brother Simon put up such a strong performance in the Giro, is another who could make his presence felt.

Recommendation
V Nibali
1pt each-way 16-1 bet365


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Team Sky arrive without three-time winner Froome in their squad for the first time since 2011
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