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June 8 update: Outside of the Tour de France, it's unusual to have a 49 km time-trial especially in a one-week stage race. But, this is the Critérium du Dauphiné where it's mostly about the mountains and time-trialing. And now that we are done with the obligatory sprint stages, we can get to the essence of this race.

The Stage 3 individual time-trial takes place in Provence starting in Monteux (southwest of Carpentras) and finishes in Sorgues (northeast of Avignon). The course is almost a loop.

There is a category 3 climb in the first half that goes up to 370m (320m of gain from the start) to La Roque-sur-Pernes () on Plateau de Vaucluse. Some of the best (hilly) cycling in Provence is just to the northeast including Le Mont-Ventoux and Gorges de la Nesque.

The second half of the TT features a descent and flat run back to the Rhône Valley for the finish in Sorgues. The TT doesn't look technical as mapped. It should be fun especially for those good against the clock.

Needless to say, there will be some major time gaps in the General Classification after stage 3 with Alberto Contador expected to widen his lead. Look to last year's Dauphine TT winner, HTC-Columbia's Bert Grabsch and Garmin's David Millar to light up this course as well. RadioShack's Janez Brajkovic has looked good this week and Contador has him pegged as one of the favorites for this stage. — Steve

Stage 3 climbs:
Km 15.0 - Côte de La Roque-sur-Pernes - 1.9 km at 6.8 % (Category 3)

Stage 3 ITT Start Order and Times (CEST)
Millar aims to overcome Dauphiné prologue disappointmentcyclingnews
Contador:"La crono será difícil porque apenas he entrenado con la nueva bici"
Contador: "The time trial will be difficult because I've only trained with the new bike"