Tuesday, July 5, 2011

TDF: An American Wins on the 4th of July

Just a few months after American Tyler Farrar contemplated quiting the sport, he comes up big on America's day.

Farrar was best friends with Wouter Weylandt who was tragically killed in the Giro a few months ago and was so depressed he quit cycling.

He came back big for the Dauphine Libere, a week long race that is kind of a "tune-up" for the Tour.

"After crossing the finish line, Farrar held up his hands to form a "W" with his fingers and thumbs in tribute to Weylandt.

"This has been a horrible last two months with everything that happened in the Giro," Farrar said. "I've had a lot of ups and downs. But in the end, I wanted to be able to come back, and do something special to pay tribute, and this is certainly the biggest stage in the world to do that.

"I certainly would have taken it on any day," Farrar said. "But as an American, winning on the Fourth of July, it's the icing on the cake. ... Lucky me.""

Farrar is the first American to win a stage since Levi Leipheimer in 2007 and the first in all time to win on the 4th of July.

Big Thor Hushovd gets to keep the yellow jersey for now. He won't be able to keep it during the mountain stages in weeks 2 and 3 when the climbers really take hold. That is "Contador's time" and the anemic looking Spaniard has to win all the mountain stages to make up for the lost time on day one.

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