Alberto Contador Won the Tour De France 2010 Finale, which had looked as dramatic wins. One of the closest-fought Tours de France in the past 20 years lived out a dramatic finale yesterday as Alberto Contador narrowly fended off Andy Schleck in the individual time-trial to claim his third overall title.
The 27 years old Spaniard sealed the victory after holding off a challenge from main rival Andy Schleck of Luxembourg in Saturday’s individual time trial. Their battle for the title provided a glimpse of what should become the Tour’s next great rivalry. They raced wheel-to-wheel until separated in Stage 15, when Schleck’s chain broke on a climb in the Pyrenees, then again on a lung-busting duel up the Col du Tourmalet that was the highlight of the race.
“I suffered to get this result, I don’t have words to express what I feel.” according to Alberto Contador, before hoisting the victor’s cup with Paris’ Arc de Triomphe in the background.
Schleck finished 39 seconds back, and Denis Menchov of Russia was third overall.
Armstrong has completed his last Tour in 23rd place, 39:20 after Contador, his former teammate and rival. His disappointing, crash-filled result was a far cry from the American’s third-place finish in 2009 on his return from a four-year retirement.
Mark Cavendish of Britain claimed his fifth stage victory this Tour and 15th in his career in a sprint at the end of the 20th and final stage – largely a ceremonial 63.7-mile course from Longjumeau to Paris.
Contador exchanged hugs with his Astana teammates, who began chanting “Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole” on the Champs-Elysees, where thousands of fans lined the route to cheer the cyclists. He now joins Greg LeMond, Louison Bobet and Philippe Thys as a three-time Tour champion.
Armstrong is the most successful Tour rider with seven consecutive wins, between 1999 and 2005. His last ride in his beloved race began in controversy and ended under a cloud of suspicion, following accusations by former teammate Floyd Landis that Armstrong used performance-enhancing drugs to win.
Landis was stripped of his 2006 Tour title after a positive test and later admitted doping. His allegations against Armstrong and others helped launch a federal investigation. Armstrong has never tested positive and as he has in the past, again denied any involvement in doping.