Good morning and welcome along to the final day of the Dauphiné!
We have a runaway leader but this stage still looks like a mouthwatering prospect, with a three-col finale followed by the plunge into Grenoble and the kick up the horribly steep ramps of the Bastille climb that looks out over the city.
Another stupidly early start today and the riders are already rolling. They're in the neutral zone now and racing should be underway shortly.
Before we get going, now's the time to catch up on yesterday's action. Stage 7 report, full standings, and plenty of nice mountain pics in the link below.
Here was the start line a little earlier, Jonas Vingegaard in yellow alongside Victor Campenaerts who earned the polka-dots with his solo mountain breakaway yesterday.
The flag is waved and the final stage of the Dauphiné is underway. It should be a big battle for the breakaway given today's parcours.
Campenaerts gets himself into an early move, with Franck Bonnamour (AG2R Citroën) and Martin Urianstad (Uno X).
David Gaudu (FDJ) goes on the attack. A big name but he's had a poor Dauphiné and is nearly seven minutes down on GC.
Gaudu joins the leading trio, along with Andrea Piccolo (EF Education-EasyPost), Brent Van Moer (Lotto-Dstny), Matteo Vercher (TotalEnergies), Marco Brenner (Team DSM), Fabio Van den Bossche (Alpecin-Deceuninck), Gianmarco Garofoli (Astana Qazaqstan).
After all of 2km on the flat, the road has been going uphill here and it's properly climbing now for the first of the day's categorised climbs, the Côte de Pinet (6.3km at 6.1%).
Urianstad and Garofoli are already dropped from the breakaway.
Big riders jumping the small gap to the breakaway!
Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), Richard Carapaz (EF Education-EasyPost) and Attila Valter (Jumbo-Visma) infiltrate the break.
Vercher and Van den Bossche are dropped from the break now.
A chaotic start here and the bunch is less than 10 seconds behind this dangerous breakaway attempt.
Ciccone and Campenaerts go clear as the rest of the break is swallowed up.
Clement Champoussin (Arkea-Samsic) and now Franck Bonnamour (AG2R) attack and bridge to Ciccone and Campenaerts.
Julian Alaphilippe attacks!
The Frenchman is well suited to the double-digit gradients of the final climb and he's trying to fire over to the break with David De la Cruz (Astana Qazaqstan). They make it.
So we have six riders with a very small margin as we approach the top of the first climb after 15km of racing.
Here's the order, and KOM points, over the top of the Col de Pinet
1. Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Dstny), 5 pts
2. Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), 3 pts
3. Julian Alaphilippe (Soudal Quick-Ste), 2 pts
4. Clément Champoussin (Arkéa Samsic), 1 pt
5. David De la Cruz (Astana Qazaqstan)
6. Franck Bonnamour (AG2R Citroën)
The bunch follows at 30 seconds.
Three more attackers looking to bridge to the breakaway
Fred Wright (Bahrain Victorious), Felix Grossschartner (UAE Team Emirates) and Lawson Craddock (Jayco-AlUla)
Another counter-attack sets off now - Esteban Chaves (EF Education-EasyPost), Antonio Pedrero (Movistar), Mathieu Burgaudeau (Total Energies), Simon Guglielmi (Arkéa Samsic).
The peloton is close at hand and these counters are shut down.
That latest four-man move, plus the Wright-Craddock-Grossschartner move, are absorbed back into the pack, leaving the six-man break out front.
Here's a shot of our breakaway, with Alaphilippe on the front and the polka-dots of Campenaerts just behind.
More counter-attacks now. Jumbo-Visma have decided to fire a rider up in Tiesj Benoot. He's on the move with Nelson Oliveira (Movistar) and Matteo Trentin (UAE). Andrey Amador (EF) was there but no longer.
Christophe Laporte leads the bunch for Jumbo-Visma, 45 seconds behind the front of the race.
This has been a crazy start and this whole stage could be a chaotic test of Jumbo-Visma's control. They've looked to get Benoot up the road, possibly as a passenger and insurance policy, but they're also looking to pace the bunch to keep things reasonably in check.
Of the breakaway riders, Alaphilippe is the biggest GC threat, 7th overall at 3:48.
The peloton has eased a little. The gap to the six leaders goes out above the minute-mark, with the three chasers now just 10 seconds behind.
115km to go
Junction up front, as the three-man chase group joins the six leaders to make a new, strong, nine-man breakaway
Julian Alaphilippe (Soudal-Quick-Step)
Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Dstny)
Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo)
David De la Cruz (Astana Qazaqstan)
Clément Champoussin (Arkéa Samsic)
Franck Bonnamour (AG2R Citroën)
Tiesj Benoot (Jumbo-Visma)
Nelson Oliveira (Movistar)
Matteo Trentin (UAE Team Emirates)
After just under 40km of racing, we're about to start the second climb of the day, the Col des Mouilles (3.9km at 7%).
No real fresh action on the Col des Mouilles, as the nine escapees continue at 1:15 ahead of the bunch. They've not been fully let go, and it's not fully settled, but the attacks have at least dried up.
110km to go
Campenaerts bags the maximum points at the top of the climb ahead of Ciccone, extending his lead in the mountains classification.
KOM result at Col des Mouilles
1. Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Dstny), 5 pts
2. Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), 3 pts
3. Nelson Oliveira (Movistar), 2 pts
4. Julian Alaphilippe (Soudal Quick-Step), 1 pt
It's Bora-Hansgrohe leading the peloton. They have Jai Hindley in fourth place overall and they're riding solidly to keep this gap just above the one-minute mark.
We're descending now, then we have an uncategorised climb and a largely downhill 25km run through the valley before the three big climbs that precede our finale on the stinging ramps to the Bastille fortress above Grenoble.
The gap grows to 90 seconds on the descent.
85km to go
After the uncategorised climb, the gap rises to two minutes, but this breakaway isn't gaining enough ground to go after the stage win.
Jonas Vingegaard in the bunch. It's almost impossible to see him losing that yellow jersey today.
68km to go
The gap grows to 2:30 on the valley road.
65km to go
Campenaerts leads the breakaway through the intermediate sprint in Pontcharra, with the gap to the peloton increasing to 2:45.
The real climbing on this final day is about to begin as we hit the Hors-Catégorie climb of the Col du Granier (9.6km at 8.6%).
Here's what we're dealing with. The Granier is the first of those peaks and is followed by two more hard climbs.
Ineos Grenadiers take it up on the Granier.
Bonnamour and Trentin are dropped from the breakaway.
And now Campenaerts drops as well. He might just have done enough to secure the polka-dots but it's not out of reach and is now out of his hands.
Damage in the peloton as Ineos lift the pace!
Richard Carapaz, Mikel Landa, David Gaudu... all dropped
Up front, the next to lose contact are Oliveira, De Cruz and Champoussin.
And now Benoot and Ciccone lose contact!
Alaphilippe is alone in the lead on the Col du Granier.
Benoot and Ciccone come back to Alaphilippe. They're 1:50 up on the peloton.
50km to go
Champoussin has made it back to the front with just over a kilometre to the top of the Granier.
Jonathan Castroviejo has attacked. Ineos were pacing earlier on this climb but they look to now want to fire a rider up the road as Jumbo-Visma take the reins.
Top of Col du Granier - 47.7km to go
The four leaders - Alaphilippe, Benoot, Ciccone, Champoussin - reach the summit of today's only HC climb, with Benoot nudging forward to lead them over the top but without any contest for KOM points.
Onto the descent and Alaphilippe is going hell for leather.
Jumbo-Visma lead a heavily reduced bunch downhill, having crested the Granier 1:15 in arrears.
Castroviejo is still on the attack. Here's a shot of his move a little earlier. I'll be honest - I'm not sure what he's doing.
Further down the climb, Ineos were pacing hard through Omar Fraile.
Dylan van Baarle is doing the work for Jumbo-Visma. They also have Attila Valter - who produced a remarkable turn yesterday - alongside Vingegaard, while Benoot is of course up the road in the break.
37.5km to go
The next climb begins
It's the Col de Cucheron. It's a category-2 ascent, measuring 7.7km at 6.2%
The gap goes out again on this Cucheron climb. Although Benoot is sandbagging, Ciccone, Champoussin, and Alaphilippe are riding hard and well together. Meanwhile, it's still just Van Baarle on the front of the bunch for Jumbo-Visma.
Castroviejo is giving it a big nudge on this climb. He started it only 15 seconds or so ahead of the peloton and he looked to be pointlessly dangling but he has made progress and is now a minute up on the bunch and half a minute behind the head of the race.
A reminder of what we're dealing with here. We're on the middle climb of this trio and it has some steeper stuff now in the final 3km.
Castroviejo is storming along. He's 20 seconds behind the leaders now and he can see them.
10 seconds now for the Spaniard. The others look around and spot him. They continue to ride at the same pace, though.
Final kilometre of the climb and Castroviejo is going to make it on before the summit. That will add firepower and hope to this break.
30km to go
Castroviejo makes it across just before the summit. Five riders out front.
Top of Col du Cucheron - 29km to go
So the five leaders reach the top of the Col du Cucheron, and once again Benoot - who has been on the back the whole time - nudges through to lead them over the top and take the maximum collection of mountains points.
Van Baarle leads the peloton over at 1:40.
Another descent now and Alaphilippe once again gives it everything. This is his speciality and it's where this break need to grab as much time as they possibly can.
Short descent, then the Cat-1 Col de Porte, then a long descent into Grenoble, and the mad final climb.
The Col de Porte begins
It's 7.4km at 6.8% and the leading quintet take a lead of 1:47 onto it.
Champoussin is dropped and Castroviejo was caught off guard and is now distanced with Benoot in the wheel. Alaphilippe was alive to it and joins Ciccone.
Change in the peloton
UAE take it up. Van Baarle is immediately done for the day.
UAE have Adam Yates in second overall, as the closest challenger to Vingegaard. They also have the threat of Alaphlippe moving up into an overall podium position if these time gaps are maintained by the finish.
5km to the top of the Col de Porte and Ciccone and Alaphilippe have found 10 seconds on Castroviejo and Benoot, but they're not extending it right now.
Benoot is finally taking some turns as he now helps Castroviejo fight their way back to Alaphilippe and Ciccone.
UAE have done a fair bit of damage already. Only around 15 riders left in the bunch now, and the gap to the front of the race is down to a minute.
Dani Martinez is dropped for Ineos.
The top of this climb is a virtual finish line, with a 15km descent to come where the leaders should be able to stem the tide of any time losses, to try and give themselves a chance to fight for victory on the final wall in Grenoble.
20km to go
Ciccone attacks Alaphilippe!
Just under 3km to the summit and Ciccone rips away from the former world champion.
Bernal is dropped now from the GC group.
UAE shredded that bunch and Yates now takes flight. Vingegaard follows. No one else can.
Ben O'Connor attacks from the chase group.
Antonio Pedrero (Movistar) had already attacked and has just bridged. Great ride from a lesser name.
O'Connor joins Yates, Vingegaard, and Pedrero, as they themselves catch Benoot and Castroviejo.
Meanwhile Ciccone has found half a minute on Alaphilippe already.
The Vingegaard/Yates group catches Alaphilippe in the final kilometre of the Col de Porte.
Hindley manages to scramble across, with Haig and a few others, including Guillaume Martin and Louis Meintjes.
Pedrero attacks the yellow jersey group!
Top of Col de Porte - 17km to go
Ciccone leads solo over the Col de Porte. He takes a lead of 30 seconds onto the descent, over an 11-man group that contains the yellow jersey, Jonas Vingegaard.
We're zipping downhill on this long descent and Ciccone is taking every risk to try and give himself a chance here.
Pedrero is still off the front of the GC group, which is 35 seconds behind the lone leader.
A couple of riders come back to the GC group - Castroviejo and Carlos Rodriguez among them.
11.5km to go
Ciccone hits 85km/h as he gets into a UCI-legal aero tuck. He takes his lead out to 40 seconds.
45 seconds for Ciccone, who'll need every second he can get here. The final climb is short but super super steep.
In fact, this is how steep...
Ciccone moves out to 50 seconds now. He's taking every possible risk and he takes it to the absolute limit on a sweeping right-hander. Right up to the roadside barrier there.
3.5km to go
The kilometres are ticking by quickly but they'll slow down again in the final 1.8km.
Pedrero is still chasing 10 seconds ahead of the GC group.
And here is the composition of the GC group
Jonas Vingegaard, Tiesj Benoot (Jumbo-Visma), Adam Yates (UAE Team Emirates), Ben O'Connor (AG2R Citroën), Jai Hindley (Bora-Hansgrohe), Jack Haig (Bahrain Victorious), Louis Meintjes (Intermarché-Circus-Wanty), Guillaume Martin (Cofidis), Torsten Traen (Uno-X), Julian Alaphilippe (Soudal-Quick-Step), Jonathan Castroviejo, Carlos Rodriguez (Ineos Grenadiers), Rafal Majka (UAE Team Emirates)
2km to go
Ciccone comes off the descent and into Grenoble. Here we go!
He heads onto a narrow road that takes him onto the climb up to the Bastille Fortress that looks out over Grenoble.
A reminder that it's 1.8km at an eye-watering 14.2%
Benoot leads the GC group off the descent. If Vingegaard opens the taps, then Ciccone is in big trouble. 55 seconds is the gap.
Majka takes it up for UAE and Yates!
Alaphilipe and Traen are struggling in that group. Rodriguez and Meintjes now too.
Only Yates, Vingegaard, O'Connor, and Hindley can follow Majka's pace.
They catch Pedrero but Ciccone is still 40 seconds out front!
1km to go
1000 metres to go and Ciccone is putting in a great ride. He's holding on but if Vingegaard truly opens the taps then it could come crashing down quickly.
And now Vingegaard attacks!!
It's a smooth, seated acceleration, and he makes it look so easy as he drifts clear.
No one can follow Vingegaard, obviously.
Yates scrambles in response now.
O'Connor distances Hindley as he himself chases Yates
500 metres to go and time gaps have disappeared but it looks like he still has half a minute.
Loads of fans out on the road and they roar Ciccone up. 150 metres to go
Ciccone rounds one last horrific bend. He zips the jersey up and knows he's got it
No glasses to toss - where have they gone? But he punches the air in delight
Vingegaard finishes second place at 23 seconds, and of course wins the Dauphiné overall.
Yates third at 35 seconds.
O'Connor fourth at 50 seconds. That's the GC podium - Vingegaard, Yates, O'Connor.
The latest race content, interviews, features, reviews and expert buying guides, direct to your inbox!
Thank you for signing up to The Pick. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.
Latest on Cyclingnews
Tour de Suisse stage 3 live - Race hits the mountainsSummit finish at Villars-sur-Ollon set to test GC contenders
Thomas De Gendt set to miss Tour de France for 12-day cycling tripBelgian will ride from Belgium to Spain to prepare for Vuelta a España
Zipp 353 NSW review: the most comfortable wheels ever?There’s a lot more to the 353 NSW wheels than the weight
Tour de France 2023 – Analysing the contendersAs the Tour draws near, here's our latest form ranking for the yellow jersey contenders
Mont Ventoux race cut to single ascent due to storm risksRace will still finish atop the Giant of Provence but after first, easier climb from Sault
Tulsa Tough: Olivia Cummins and Justin Williams win third round of American Crit CupAndrea Cyr and Danny Summerhill extend overall leads in US series
Loana Lecomte dominates World Cup in LenzerheideTerpstra second, Keller third in round two as Pieterse leads the overall series
Nino Schurter secures record 34th World Cup victory in LenzerheideWorld Champion beats Hatherly in second, Sarrou third in round two and takes series lead
Hunt 48 Limitless UD Carbon Review: Fast, wide, and very stiffThese mid depth, super wide race wheels handle beautifully, but the steel spoked version would suffice for most