Tour de France: The going gets tough

16th July 2004, Comments 0 comments

16 July 2004 , CASTELSARRASIN - The 12th stage of the 2004 Tour de France, which will take the riders to the top of the Pyrenees Mountains, got underway on Friday.

16 July 2004  

CASTELSARRASIN - The 12th stage of the 2004 Tour de France, which will take the riders to the top of the Pyrenees Mountains, got underway on Friday.

Five-time Tour champion Lance Armstrong has won at La Mongie before and may try to open up a decisive lead over his main rivals, fellow American Tyler Hamilton, Jan Ullrich of Germany and Spaniards Roberto Heras and Iban Mayo.

Going for an unprecedented sixth Tour title, Armstrong has leads over the four riders ranging from 45 seconds to more than 5 minutes.

After a series of stages that were run in almost identical fashion, with little change in the overall standings, Friday's 197.5-km course from Castelsarrasin to La Mongie should finally shake things up.

The stage ends with two 1st-category climbs, with the finish line situated at an altitude of 1,715 metres, partway up the legendary Col de Tourmalet, and at the end of a 12.8-km climb. The final kilometre rises at a gradient of 10 per cent.

DPA

Subject: German news



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