The 2010 Tour de France is over, and it’s time to see who won and who sort-of lost. Let’s face it: getting into the Tour, one really can’t be a loser.
Alberto Contador is now a three-time Tour Champion. His reward: 450,000 Euros. Maybe he’ll give some of that to his Astana teammates.
Andy Schleck finished in second place, 39 oh-so-close seconds behind Contador. Schleck won the white jersey for best rider under 25 years old and 20,000 Euros that he can use to buy his brother Fränk a new collarbone.
Alessandro Petacchi of the Italian team Lampre won the green sprinter’s jersey and 25,000 Euros. But he may lose that prize if recent doping allegations prove true.
Mark Cavendish won five stages at this year’s Tour even after his HTC lead-out man Mark Renshaw was booted for headbutting.
Fabian Cancellara won the opening prologue and penultimate stage time trial, proving he really is Spartacus.
The French: Anthony Charteau won the polka-dot mountain climber’s jersey. Sylvain Chavanel won two stages. Christophe Riblon won Stage 14. France’s national champion Thomas Voeckler won Stage 15. And Christophe Moreau, the oldest rider in the Tour at 39-years-old, made a valiant effort to finish 22nd overall, just one place above the next oldest rider, Lance Armstrong. That’s more victories than the race hosts have had in a long time.
RadioShack was one of the few teams that ended the Tour with all nine riders. That certainly helped it win the prize for best team– beating out the Spanish Caisse D’Epargne. And kudos to the Shack’s Sergio Paulinho for out-sprinting a world-class sprinter to win Stage 10.
Lance Armstrong is always a winner. Despite his lackluster performance in this year’s Tour, he has done more for the sport of cycling than any other athlete.
The Tour de France is the biggest winner and will always be the world’s most prestigious bike race.
Cadel Evans wore the yellow leader’s jersey for one day but crashed early in the Tour and broke his elbow. Unable to climb without pulling up on the handlebars, the Aussie finished a disappointing 26th place for his new team BMC.
Thor Hushovd of Cervélo Test Team wore the green jersey for eleven days, but the God of Thunder lost it before the Tour finished in Paris.
Christian VandeVelde, Tyler Farrar and Robbie Hunter left the Tour early with injuries, leaving Garmin-Transitions with little to celebrate until Ryder Hesjedal finished in the top ten. Let’s move Ryder up to the winners.
Team Sky won my award for best jersey but lost big time with its investment in Brad Wiggins. What happened to the British Tour hopeful who ended up in 24th place? It just goes to prove looks aren’t everything.
Saxo Bank is losing the Schleck brothers. Andy and Fränk reportedly will leave Saxo to race for a Luxembourg team next year. Saxo’s team manager Bjarne Riis is reportedly courting Contador. Cha-ching!
Lance Armstrong is a winner and loser. He had his worst luck ever in a bike race, crashing several times in this year’s Tour. Why? Maybe it was the distraction from the Floyd Landis allegations. Or maybe it was the age thing. Perhaps both. Despite the injuries, the tough Texan put on a show in Stage 16 to Pau by starting the winning break and finishing sixth that day. It was the closest he came to winning a stage. Now that the Tour is over, he will rest in his expensive home in Aspen and enjoy his five kids with one more on the way. Next year, he’ll race in the Hawaii Ironman. He may have lost the Tour, but he’s won many hearts.
Au revoir. Until next year, Vive Le Tour!