Armstrong wins final time trial

Associated Press

Saint-Etienne, July 23:

Lance Armstrong won the Tour de France’s final time trial on Saturday, giving him the stage win he lacked and all but guaranteeing him a seventh consecutive — and last — Tour title to round out a stellar career. Armstrong beat second-placed Jan Ullrich of Germany by 23 seconds in the 20th stage to extend his already comfortable race lead — setting him up for a victory ride on Sunday’s last leg into Paris, when the 33-year-old will retire. Armstrong made easy work of the winding, hilly and crowd-lined 55.5-km route that looped north of Saint-Etienne in central France. Armstrong set out last of the 155 riders, his legs whirring, the yellow jersey on his back. He trailed Ivan Basso of Italy at the first time-check, but stayed ahead from that point.