Armstrong wins crucial Tour de France time trial

21st July 2004, Comments 0 comments

ALPE D'HUEZ, France, July 21 (AFP) - American Lance Armstrong took another step towards his sixth Tour de France yellow jersey after winning the 16th stage time trial, a 15.5km climb up the legendary Alpe d'Huez here on Wednesday.

ALPE D'HUEZ, France, July 21 (AFP) - American Lance Armstrong took another step towards his sixth Tour de France yellow jersey after winning the 16th stage time trial, a 15.5km climb up the legendary Alpe d'Huez here on Wednesday.  

The 32-year-old US Postal rider came over the finish line of the famous climb with the 21 hairpin bends in a time of 39min 41sec to further guarantee his ownership of the race leader's yellow jersey.  

Germany's 1997 winner Jan Ullrich, who beat Armstrong by more than a minute and a half in the first time trial of last year's race, clocked 40min 42sec to claim second place.   His T-Mobile team mate Andreas Kloden finished third at 1:41.  

CSC team leader Ivan Basso, who started the day in second place at just over a minute behind Armstrong, was one of the biggest losers, the Italian losing nearly two and a half minutes to his American rival.  

Despite two-minute intervals between the favourites, Armstrong overtook Basso less than four kilometres from the finish line.  

The 26-year-old is now 3:48 behind Armstrong. Kloden is third overall at 5:03 with Ullrich in fourth place at 7:55.  

Armstrong, who took the yellow jersey from France's Thomas Voeckler on Tuesday's first day in the Alps, had to add weight to his bike before the stage after it weighed in under the permitted minimum weight of 6.8kg.

 

© AFP

Subject: French news

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