Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Britain's Wiggins rolls toward so much Tour history

BAGNERES-DE-LUCHON, France — Britain's Bradley Wiggins overcame the mountains and challengers to retain the yellow jersey, while Spain's Alejandro Valverde won Thursday's 17th stage of the Tour de France.

After the last hard ascent, Bradley maintained his overall lead and said he sensed "that it was pretty much over" with just three racing days left. He's trying to become the first Briton to win cycling's biggest race.

Wiggins faces one last test — the individual time trial, his specialty — on Saturday.

Flat stages await Wiggins today and Sunday, which features the ride to the finish in Paris. Those stages aren't expected to alter the standings.

He appears on pace to make history: Wiggins would become the first Olympic track champion to become a Tour winner. He took the yellow jersey in Stage 7 and hasn't let go of it since. No rider has done that since France's Bernard Hinault held a lead from the same stage in 1981 to the finish.

An 89-mile ride from Bagneres-de-Luchon to Peyragudes featured three ascents in the Pyrenees and an uphill finish. Valverde won his third Tour stage in a breakaway. Christopher Froome of Britain was second, and Wiggins was third, both 19 seconds back.

"I went all out," said Valverde, whose Tour started with three crashes. "When I saw there were only 700 meters left, I was really really happy."

Overall, Wiggins leads Froome by 2 minutes, 5 seconds, and Italy's Vincenzo Nibali is third, 2:41 back.

Britain's Wiggins rolls toward so much Tour history 07/19/12 [Last modified: Thursday, July 19, 2012 8:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Timmy Claus is coming to town

    Blogs

    The circus is coming to town.

    Well, close enough.

    Timmy the Tebow is coming to Tampa Bay.

    It’s true. At least it could be. St. Timothy has been promoted by the New York Mets to high Class-A Port St. Lucie. If he stays promoted, Tebow should be in Tampa Bay for eight games beginning August 10 …

    Coming soon: Tim Tebow will hit Tampa Bay in August.
  2. Ranking Malik Zaire among 2017's top transfer quarterbacks

    Blogs

    The Florida Gators' Malik Zaire is among many transfers who could become starters at their new school. Here's how he stacks up in our rankings of top transfer quarterbacks:

  3. Lightning re-sign Yanni Gourde to two-year, one-way deal

    Blogs

    Just three years ago, Yanni Gourde was fightning to stay in pro hockey.

    Yanni Gourde seized his moment with six goals in 20 games as a callup last season.
  4. Next up in Bucs renovations? A $20 million indoor practice facility

    Bucs

    Renderings of the Bucs' new indoor practice facility (Courtesy of the Bucs)
  5. Lightning re-signs Andrej Sustr to one-year, $1.95 million deal

    Blogs

    The Lightning locked up another piece of its blueline Monday, re-signing defenseman Andrej Sustr to a one-year, $1.95 million deal.

    Andrej Sustr 14 points in 80 games last season, a minus-10.