Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 29 November 2014

Wiggins makes history in Paris

Bradley Wiggins celebrates his Tour de France win with team mate Chris Froome, left, who came second, and third-placed rider Vincenzo Nibali
Bradley Wiggins celebrates his Tour de France win with team mate Chris Froome, left, who came second, and third-placed rider Vincenzo Nibali

Bradley Wiggins has made history as he became the first British man to win the Tour de France.

The 32-year-old punched his arms in the air and clapped as he crossed the finish line on Paris's Champs-Elysees.

Fellow Briton Mark Cavendish won the final stage of the race into Paris.

Wiggins' feat is expected to make him remembered as one of Britain's greatest ever sportsmen. The final stage was the 13th consecutive day that he had worn the race leader's yellow jersey in the 99th edition of the gruelling 20 stage, 3,497 kilometre (2,173-mile) race.

He completed the day three minutes and 21 seconds ahead of Team Sky colleague Chris Froome, who becomes the second Briton on the podium in the history of the race.

There were jubilant scenes as British fans who have travelled to Paris celebrated the result.

Wiggins told ITV: "Job done really. I don't know what to say really. I've had 24 hours for it to sort of soak in. Today we were just on a mission to finish the job off. This sort of thing happens to other people, you never imagine it happens to you. It's incredible."

Cavendish, who powered to the front in his rainbow jersey 400 metres from the line, has won on the French capital's most famous boulevard in each of the Tours he has completed - in 2009, 2010, 2011 and now in 2012.

The 27-year-old from the Isle of Man, who also won stages two and 18, now has 23 Tour stage wins, moving above Lance Armstrong and Andre Darrigade into fourth place in the all-time list.

Cavendish said: "It's incredible. It couldn't be more perfect. It couldn't be a better end to an amazing tour."

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