Risoul - Dreadful weather prompted several retirements during the eighth and final stage of the Tour de France warm-up race the Criterium du Dauphine on Sunday.
Germany's time-trial world champion Tony Martin didn't even start the 155.5km stage from Sisteron to Risoul as he had a sore throat.
Others, though, did start but found the going too tough to see the race through to the finish including French champion Nacer Bouhanni and compatriots Pierre Rolland and Sylvain Chavanel.
Rolland, eighth in last year's Tour de France, said he had felt a twinge in his Achilles tendon on Saturday evening after the seventh stage.
"We decided with the staff that I would give it a go today but that at the slightest hint of pain I should take no risks with just three weeks to the start of the Tour," he said.
"I am very disappointed and a little and a little crestfallen. I hope that a few days of rest will suffice for me to recover," added the 26-year-old specialist climber.
Others to call it a day were Belgian Thomas de Gendt, Norway's 2010 world road race champion Thor Hushovd and Spaniard David Lopez.