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Bradley Wiggins wins Tour de France

PARIS: Bradley Wiggins was crowned Britain’s first Tour de France champion on Sunday after helping Sky team-mate Mark Cavendish to secure a fourth consecutive stage win on the world-famous Champs-Elysees in Paris.

Bradley Wiggins wins Tour de France

Wiggins, who virtually sealed victory when he won his second time-trial of the three-week epic on Saturday, finished the 3,479km race with a 3min 21sec lead over British team-mate Chris Froome after the 20th and last stage.It was Isle of Man sprinter Cavendish’s fourth consecutive stage win on the Champs-Elysees, taking his tally of stage wins in this year’s race to three and to 23 overall.Three years after Wiggins equalled Scot Robert Millar’s 1984 best British finish of fourth overall, in 2009, Wiggins finally achieved his childhood dream of winning the world’s most prestigious bike race.Italian Vincenzo Nibali of the Liquigas team finished third overall at 6:19.Team Sky achieved the rare feat of a 1-2 on the podium, the first since 1996, when Dane Bjarne Riis finished ahead of his German team-mate at Telekom, Jan Ullrich.It is also the first time compatriots have taken the first two places since France’s Laurent Fignon finished ahead of five-time winner Bernard Hinault in the 1985 edition.Frenchman Thomas Voeckler of Europcar won the polka dot jersey for the race’s best climber, with Slovakian Peter Sagan of the Liquigas team easily securing the green jersey for the points competition.American Tejay Van Garderen made up for BMC team leader Cadel Evans’ disastrous title defence by winning the race’s white jersey for the best-placed rider aged 25 and under.Evans, who made history by becoming Australia’s first champion in 2011, eventually finished nearly 16 minutes behind Wiggins.AFP

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