Cycling: Spain hails 'very difficult' Contador tour victory

MADRID - Spain's secretary of state for sport hailed Alberto Contador's win of the Tour de France on Sunday, saying the 26-year-old had proven himself to be a "real champion".
"I am really happy because Contador won a very difficult Tour and it is the second Tour which he has won," Spanish media quoted Jaime Lissavetzky as saying in Paris where he watched Contador cross the finish line.

Cycling: Spain hails 'very difficult' Contador tour victory
"He fought under conditions which were not the most adequate to face a race such as this one. For this reason I feel enormous satisfaction, it is not just a question of legs but also of mind and Contador was a real champion," he added.
Contador, the winner of the 2007 Tour, was locked into a duel with his Astana team-mate Lance Armstrong, a seven-time champion, for much of the race, raising tensions between the two.
He took control of the Tour in the final week in the Alps leading to a fourth straight win of the cycling race by a Spaniard.
Oscar Pereiro won the Tour in 2006 and Carlos Sastre emerged as the winner in 2008.
Several hundred people watched Contador win the 2009 Tour in his hometown of Pinto, south of Madrid, on a large television screen set up outdoors by local officials.
The cyclists will be welcomed back to Madrid on Monday by the president of the Madrid regional government, Esperanza Aguirre, before heading to Pinto where a celebration is planned.

Sunday, July 26th 2009

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