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Page last updated at 16:21 GMT, Thursday, 23 July 2009 17:21 UK

Tour de France - stage 18 as it happened

Stage 18 - Annecy time trial, 40.5km

LATEST ACTION (all times BST)

606: DEBATE

To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111 and put "Cycling" at the start of them. (Not all contributions can be used)

By Chris Bevan

1716: In the meantime, join me tomorrow for stage 19 - a 178km trek from Bourgoin Jallieu to Aubenas - it might be a chance for us to catch our breath, but I wouldn't bank on it! Apologies for the technical problems we had earlier on, and see you soon.

1712: Yep, we certainly got the fireworks we expected, and it sets us up for a splendid climax to the Tour, up Mont Ventoux, at the end of stage 20 on Saturday. Expect more action then...Contador may have the win wrapped up but this Tour is far from over...

Text in your views on 81111
1704: From David in Cardiff, via text on 81111: "What a stage Mont Ventoux is going to be on Saturday! Great show by Wiggins today."

Lance Armstrong
1701: Hmmm, I thought Lance was a bit disappointing today...What do you reckon folks? The way he started it looked like he would hoover up Andy Schleck and move second overall but he faded a bit towards the end and only finished 16th on the day.

1652: Wiggins has made up time on all of his rivals who were above him in the General Classification (apart from Contador) and is just 11 seconds behind Lance Armstrong, who sits third. Andy Schleck rode superbly - considering his weakness in time trials - and will be confident of keeping second place for Paris. This Tour could have a few more twists and turns for us before then though...

1647: So Contador looks to be safely in yellow - even with the fearsome Mont Ventoux to come on Saturday. Behind him? Places on the podium are still up for grabs - Armstrong is back in the top three and don't write Wiggo off yet folks...

Yellow jersey
1644: GENERAL CLASSIFICATION AFTER STAGE 18:

1. Alberto Contador (Spa/Astana) 73 hrs 15 mins 39 seconds
2. Andy Schleck (Lux/Saxo Bank) + 4 mins 11 secs
3. Lance Armstrong (USA/Astana) + 5 min 25 secs
4. Bradley Wiggins (GB/Garmin) + 5 min 36 secs
5. Andreas Kloden (Ger/Astana) + 5 mins 38 secs
6. Frank Schleck (Lux/Saxo Bank) + 5 mins 59 secs

It's good news for a British rider
Bradley Wiggins
1642: Whooo! Wiggo is up to fourth overall - I was right first time about him and Kloden, who began nine seconds ahead of him in the GC but finished 11 seconds behind the Brit today. Full standings to follow - it's very close folks, apart from Contador of course - they can probably crown him winner now...failing disaster...

1640: RESULTS OF STAGE 18 TIME TRIAL:

1. Alberto Contador (Spa/Astana) 48 mins and 31 secs
2. Fabian Cancellara (Swi/Saxobank) + 3 secs
3. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) + 12 secs

Britain's David Millar was fifth, Bradley Wiggins sixth.

Yellow jersey
1635: But no doubting who the king of this year's Tour is - Alberto Contador - he comes home in 48 minutes and 31 seconds to win today's time trial and cement his overall lead.

1634: Andy Schleck finished strongly in the end - looks like he is going to hang on to second place overall.

1633: The top three times of the day are still:

1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi/Saxobank)48 minutes and 34 seconds
2. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha)+ 12 secs
3. Gustav Larsson (Swe/Saxobank)+ 30 secs

Britain's David Millar is fourth, Wiggo is fifth.

1630: Armstrong finished in exactly 50 minutes in the end, one minute and 27 seconds down on Cancellara. Frank Schleck was another minute slower...

Lance Armstrong
1630: Contador is still flying along while all this is going on by the way - he looks in incredible form. But the real battle today is for the podium places. It appears Lance is back in the top three, and could even go second above Andy Schleck...Wiggo will be fourth.

1626: It looks like Wiggo could be fourth tonight, if he has done just enough to go above Kloden. He could still overhaul Lance Armstrong too...

1625: Here comes Kloden now - and he crosses the line in 49:24 - the German was 11 seconds ahead of Wiggins in the General Classification before today, and he has finished exactly 11 seconds behind him...

1623: Kloden goes through the third checkpoint 11 seconds slower than Wiggo - exactly his lead before the stage started (not nine as I said earlier!).

Bradley Wiggins
1622: Wiggins crosses the finish line with the fifth-fastest time of the day - just outside that of his Garmin team-mate and fellow Brit David Millar - in 49:13. Let's see how the people still on the road get on...

1620: Frank Schleck is losing a LOT of time but Wiggo is also slowing up, he was only fourth fastest at the 37km mark - 27 seconds down on Cancellara. He needs to push HARD in the last 3.5km. C'mon Wiggo!

1618: Armstong has just reached the top of the Cote de Bluffy (28.5km of 40.5km)...42 seconds down on Wiggins' time.

Yellow jersey
1617: Contador goes through the second checkpoint in second place - seven seconds inside Wiggins but three seconds slower than Ignatiev. Has the maillot jaune gone too hard, too soon?

1615: Kloden has closed the gap on Wiggins - the German was 16 seconds down on Wiggo at the top of Cote de Bluffy.

Get involved on 606
1614: BBC Radio 5 Live's Alex Murray on 606: "Contador is flying. He's so small, relative to the traditional style of TT rider, that he has a much smaller frontal area which means that he has to put out considerably less power to cut through the air at the same speed as riders like Cancellara or Wiggins."

1612: Lance was 11th fastest at the second checkpoint and, as things stand, is going to move above Frank Schleck and into third overall. Overhauling Frank is Wiggo's next target now...

Bradley Wiggins
It's good news for a British rider
1610: Wiggo reaches the top of Cote de Bluffy...and he's the fastest man to reach the third checkpoint so far - five seconds inside Ignatiev. He's going to move above Kloden and into fifth place overall, if he keeps this up anyhow...

Yellow jersey
1606: Andy Schleck has lost 26 seconds on Wiggo at the first checkpoint but the REAL news is Alberto Contador - he's just flown through, clocking 20 minutes and 02 seconds.

It's good news for a British rider
1606: Frank Schleck goes through checkpoint one - he has lost 44 seconds on Wiggo already. Kloden was only 11th fastest at checkpoint two - 31 seconds slower than Wiggo.

Text in your views on 81111
1604: From anon, via text on 81111: "GO WIGGO GO!!!"

1603: Lots of Union Jacks out on the road in support of Wiggo but he's slipped to second-fastest at the second checkpoint. He is 10 seconds slower than Ignatiev. Saving himself for the Cote de Bluffy, hopefully...

1601: Lance Armstrong goes through the first checkpoint at Doussard too, and he is nine seconds slower than Wiggo so far...

1559: Andreas Kloden has just gone through the first checkpoint - 19 seconds down on Wiggo. The German was nine seconds ahead of the Brit in the overall standings before the stage began...

Twitter
BBC Sport's Phil Sheehan on Twitter: "Armstrong looks like he just tossed his Oakleys to the side of the road. What a souvenir that will be for whoever finds them!"

Get involved on 606
1555: BBC Radio 5 Live's Alex Murray on 606: "Armstrong doesn't look as smooth as you'd expect him to. Chris Boardman's twittered as much. He's really leaving it all out there today."

It's good news for a British rider
Bradley Wiggins
1551: Wow. Wiggo is going for this - he's the fastest so far to the first checkpoint, clocking 20 minutes and 20 seconds - one second inside Ignatiev. Back down the road, Lance is pushing hard...

1551: Give this page a manual refresh and you will get the link to the 5 Live commentary - it's at the top of the page. Sorry if you haven't been able to access it before now...

1550: Technical problems - dontcha just love them - grrrr. Right, I'm back with you now, just in time for the business end of this time trial (thankfully). Apologies for the problems - now, stop whatever you are doing and don't go anywhere for the next 45 minutes...this could be very tasty indeed.

Yellow jersey
1547: And off goes Alberto Contador - to huge cheers from the crowd. He's completely in yellow today, down to his cotton socks. Can he keep up his improved form in time trials here? Lots of questions - the answers will arrive in about 48 minutes time.

1543: Here come Schleck Jr - Andy. A bit of pressure on him here, he should do better than his brother Frank but is going to lose time on his rivals - the question is 'how much'...?

1540: Frank Schleck next to depart - he and his brother Andy are on a tandem today. Not really, although it would help - neither of them exactly excel at this discipline. He will be looking at this as a damage limitation exercise...

Lance Armstrong
1538: And here comes Lance now - on a yellow bike and looking very focused as he gets his countdown to the off. Armstong is going to announce the sponsor for his new team after this stage - before then, he will try to ride his way into a podium place.

1535: Andreas Kloden is next to start - the first of three Astana riders in the top five. He's expected to do very well indeed today...can Wiggo do betteR?

1533: A reminder that the first time check for Wiggins will come at Doussard at the 18km mark - about 20 minutes from the start. Mikhail Ignatiev is still the fastest man at that point.

Bradley Wiggins
It's raining
1530: The rain is coming down at the finish but at the start it is still dry. Wiggins is off - let's hope he can make a real go of this.

1528: Vincenzo Nibali, who battled it out with Wiggins in the mountains yesterday, has just hit the road. The Italian lies seventh overall, one place behind Wiggo...who is next to go. GO WIGGO!

Yellow jersey
1523: Christophe Le Mevel has just rolled out of the start - just eight more men to go then...the leaders in the General Classification...and they will depart at three-minute intervals until maillot jaune Alberto Contador starts at 1547 BST.

1519: Blimey, Christophe Moreau has flown up to the top of the Cote de Bluffy - he is second fastest at the third checkpoint, four seconds ahead of Cancellara.

1516: David Millar on his Garmin team-mate Bradley Wiggins' chances of moving up the General Classification today:
"I think today will make a big difference - the Schlecks took time off him yesterday but I think he will be back in front of them tonight - I see him getting three minutes off Frank and two minutes off Andy."

1513: TOP THREE FINISHERS (127 out of 158 riders have completed the course):

1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi/Saxobank) 48 minutes and 34 seconds
2. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) + 12 secs
3. Gustav Larsson (Swe/Saxobank) + 30 secs


Britain;s David Millar is still fourth, by the way - he finished eight seconds slower than Larsson.

1511: Luis Leon Sanchez could not sustain his early pace, although he has posted the fifth-fastest time of the day, clocking 49 minutes and 14 seconds. Cadel? He lies eighth in 49 minutes and 44 seconds.

Text in your views on 81111
1508: From Mat in Sheffield, via text on 81111: "I think Cadel Evans can still win the GC as long as he follows the first Tour's winner, Maurice Garin, and takes the train."

Polka dot jersey
1506: The polka dot socks of Franco Pellizotti have just gone over the finish line - he clocked 53 minutes and seven seconds. Cadel? He was fifth-fastest to the top of Cote de Bluffy...could he have a surprise in store for all of us...

1503: Nicolas Roche, son of 1987 winner Stephen, has just gone through the first checkpoint, a minute and 36 seconds behind Ignatiev. Still no change in the top three but Luis Leon Sanchez was three seconds inside Cancellara's time at the top of Cote de Bluffy.

It's raining
1500: The rain has stopped at Annecy but I'm still going to use my graphic. The reason? There is a huge black cloud above the lake, which looks ominous - especially if you are one of the 17 riders still waiting to set off from the start.

1457: From 1500 BST we have live commentary from the Radio 5 Live team. Click on the link below and off you go. And for all you non UK-based cycleheads, you'll be glad to hear you can listen in on the action too. Live - Radio 5 Live commentary

1454: Just a reminder of who is still to start today's time trial - all the big-hitters, basically:

Vincenzo Nibali 1529
Bradley Wiggins 1532
Andreas Kloden 1535
Lance Armstrong 1538
Frank Schleck 1541
Andy Schleck 1544
Alberto Contador 1547

It's raining
1452: It's raining at Lake Annecy. Could be a shower - could turn into a deluge - but it could have a big say in the outcome of this Time Trial. It will certainly slow down the riders who are still to go...

Text in your views on 81111
1450: From Raymondo in London, via text on 81111: "Looking at Cancellara's time suggests it unlikely that Wiggo can do much better than leap frog Kloden into fifth today."

Wiggo leapfrogging Kloden today is a big ask - but those two (and Lance) will expect to make time on the Schlecks.

1447: Looks like the only splash Cadel Evans will be making today is if he rides into Lake Annecy. He went through the first time check one minute and seven seconds slower than Mikhail Ignatiev, who remains the fastest man at that point.

1444: A couple of you have texted in to ask how Charles Wegelius fared earlier...well, the British rider came home in 53 minutes and 49 seconds, and lies 75th out of the 111 riders to have finished so far. Cav clocked dead on 54 minutes and is 82nd at the moment.

1438: Tony Martin, who held the white jersey as the Tour's best young rider for several days earlier in the race (until Andy Schleck took it off him) has come home in sixth place - one minute and one second behind Cancellara.

1435: TOP THREE FINISHERS (107 out of 158 riders have completed the course):

1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi/Saxobank) 48 minutes and 34 seconds
2. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) + 12 secs
3. Gustav Larsson (Swe/Saxobank) + 30 secs

1433: Gustav Larsson has just crossed the finish line and moves into third place overall. He just dipped inside David Millar's time - I'll bring it you when I get it.

1431: Cadel Evans, who I've stopped claiming as being Welsh as I think it has ruined his chances in this Tour, is on the road. Normally, you'd expect Cadel to make a splash on a day like this but he is having a race to forget - I'm sure he'd like to prove a point here though...

1427: A lot of chat from you lot via text about the chances of an Astana 1-2-3 in Paris on Sunday...the assumption being that Contador is home and dry in yellow, while Kloden and Armstrong will make major gains on the Schleck brothers today and survive attacks from those two on the Ventoux on Saturday. Personally, I'd love Wiggo to gatecrash that particular party but he has an awful lot to do...

1424: Sweden's Gustav Larsson has just got to the top of Cote de Bluffy in third place - three seconds behind Cancellara. And, down the road, Tony Martin is also mounting a challenge - he was joint fourth-fastest at the second checkpoint.

Polka dot jersey
1418: We've seen plenty of Franco Pellizotti in the last few days while the race was in the Alps, and he has all but secured victory in the King of the Mountains category. The man in the polka dot jersey has just started the course now - he's happy climbing than he is time trialling but at least he will enjoy going up Cote de Bluffy.

1414: Yep, looks like Zabriskie ran out of steam - he finished in 49 minutes and 32 seconds, and is the fourth-fastest finisher so far. Cancellara-Ignatiev-Millar are still the top three.

1411: Captain America (see 1409) has actually lost more time on the way down from Cote de Bluffy - at checkpoint four, he was 48 seconds behind Fabian Cancellara, and was 15 seconds slower than his Garmin team-mate David Millar, who was third fastest.

1409: There are just 40 riders left at the start now - the rest are on the road or at the finish. The big-hitters at the top of the General Classification get going in about an hour's time, but plenty of Time Trial specialists - Cancellara, Millar and Zabriskie for example - are going to post some useful times before then.

Text in your views on 81111
1405: From anon via text on 81111: "Given the Captain America shield on Dave Zabriskie's back wheel can we call him Cap now?"

1402: It seems Zabriskie has lost a bit of time on this climb - he's still third fastest to checkpoint three but has lost ground on Ignatiev and Cancellara - the American was 28 seconds down on the former, and 17 seconds slower than 'Spartacus'. He will have to try to make that up on the descent to the finish...

Yellow jersey
1400: Contador is the last man out today of course - they go in reverse order of the General Classification...the man in yellow will roll out at 1547 BST.

Get involved on 606
1357: kjbfs1 on 606: "If Alberto Contador finishes in the top three in today's time trial he will deserve to finish top dog in the race. Wiggins is very good and so is Armstrong, so if Contador can beat them, I doff my hat to him."

1355: Zabriskie was just two seconds slower than Cancellara at checkpoint two...will he be able to keep up this pace as he climbs up the Cote de Bluffy?

1351: Blimey, David Zabriskie has started like a train - the American time trial champion has already caught the two riders who started ahead of him (they go out at two-minute intervals). He was four seconds outside Cancellara's time at the first checkpoint.

1349: TOP THREE FINISHERS (84 out of 158 riders have completed the course):

1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi/Saxobank) 48 minutes and 34 seconds
2. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) + 12 secs
3. David Millar (GB/Garmin) + 38 secs

1347: Millar comes home in third place too - he lost a bit of time in the final third of the course - and he clocks 49 minutes and 11 seconds - 38 seconds slower than Cancellara.

The sun is out
1345: The sun is out at Lake Annecy, for now at least - there are reports of a vicious headwind in the early stages, though. Millar? He was third again at checkpoint four - 34 seconds down on Cancellara, 25 behind Ignatiev.

Get involved on 606
1343: bigcog on 606: "That hill is showing who is the strongest. Only three of them anywhere near close to each other from there. Millar doing well to stay in touch. Hoping he can pull more back, he seems to be doing a great ride today."

1339: More news on David Millar - he was back up to third fastest at checkpoint three (the top of Cote de Bluffy) but he has lost time on Ignatiev and Cancellara - he is 31 seconds behind the Russian, and 20 seconds slower than Spartacus was...can he make up time on the descent?

1337: TOP THREE FINISHERS (77 out of 158 riders have completed the course):

1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi/Saxobank) 48 minutes and 34 seconds
2. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) + 12 secs
3. Stef Clement (Ned/Rabobank + 1 min 34 secs

1336: Yep, Cancellara has just crossed the line in the fastest time of the day so far - 48 minutes and 34 seconds....12 seconds faster than Ignatiev.

1334: Phew! Looks like Cancellara kept something back for the final third of this course. At checkpoint four (Annecy-Le-Vieux, 37km), he clocked 45 minutes and 22 seconds - nine seconds AHEAD of Ignatiev. That's a turnaround of 16 seconds in 8.5km...just 4.5km to go now for Spartacus...

1330: David Millar has slipped to fourth place at the second checkpoint - but he hasn't lost any time on the front two, the Brit is still 25 seconds behind Ignatiev and seven seconds slower than Cancellera was at that point.

1327: Cancellara has just reached the top of Cote de Bluffy, and is still second behind Ignatiev - he passed checkpoint three in 37:36, 11 seconds down on the Russian.

Get involved on 606
1325: Dickie62 on 606: "Looking at the time gaps going into the Time Trial, I'd have thought that the three minutes between seventh and eighth place would have meant it likely that, unless he has a disastrous couple of days, Wiggo won't finish any lower than seventh, and I reckon fifth is realistically possible."

1320: David Millar has just come through the first time check in 20 minutes and 46 seconds. That puts him third - 25 seconds behind Ignatiev and seven seconds behind Cancellara. More news on Spartacus too - he has passed the second checkpoint at Talloires (25km) in 28 minutes and 40 seconds - he's still second fastest, and still 18 seconds behind Ignatiev.

Text in your views on 81111
1316: From Gunner_Pimp via text on 81111: "Afternoon Bevo. Out mtb'ing using my mob to keep track of today, think we'll see Bertie (Contador), Spartacus (Cancellara) & Klody (Andreas Kloden) as 123. A hello to fellow 606'ers too."

1310: For those of you that have been asking, our streamed 5 Live commentary starts at 1500 BST today, in time to catch all the big-hitters on the road - see 1216 for their departure times.

Text in your views on 81111
1307: From Flat in Hornchurch, via text on 81111: "Re 1240 - Wherever Wiggins finishes he has had a fantastic Tour. The best bike riders in the world have genuinely feared him. A future winner."

It's good news for a British rider
1300: David Millar is on the road - I'll give you an update when he reaches the first time check, at Doussard at the 18km mark. Cancellara, the reigning Olympic time trial champion, will get there a few minutes before him.

Get involved on 606
1259: TooSensible on 606: "Cancellara for the win today. I don't think Wiggo can be on the podium ultimately, but next year is a different matter. Getting to the end in sixth would be a remarkable result for him, but I'd love to see him do better."

Text in your views on 81111
1255: From JV, via text on 81111: "Re 1240 - in a word, no. However Wiggo will be in the top 10 (and quite possibly top five) and that in itself will be a remarkable achievement."

Green jersey
Mark Cavendish
1252: The battle between Thor Hushovd and Cav for the green jersey has been one of the highlights of this year's Tour, what with exciting sprints for stage wins, controversial disqualifications and, of course, their ongoing war of words. No doubt that the Norwegian was making a point by taking the two intermediate sprints yesterday to cement his lead in that category and he will also be pleased to finish ahead of Cav today. He's just clocked 53:53. The Manx Missile had come home in 54 minutes exactly.

1249: Mikhail Ignatiev's time will probably be good enough to keep him out in front for a good while longer, but I'll keep an eye on Fabian Cancellara's progress (he's just started) and Britain's David Millar too (he starts in five minutes).

1245: TOP THREE FINISHERS (53 out of 158 riders have completed the course):

1. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) 48 minutes and 46 seconds
2. Stef Clement + 1 min 22 secs
3. Bert Grabsch (Ger/Columbia) + 1 min 23 secs

Twitter
Lance Armstrong on Twitter: "Watch Kloden fly today..."

1242: Both Wiggo and Lance Armstrong will be confident of making up time on the Schleck brothers today - neither Andy or Frank are renowned time triallers. But who does Lance think will shine around Annecy?...

1240: So, what do you lot think Wiggo is capable of today...? Can he really make the top three in Paris?

Text in your views on 81111
1238: From Dan in Leicester, via text on 81111:"Watch out for Andreas Kloden today, could surprise a few people."

1233: TOP THREE FINISHERS (35 out of 158 riders have completed the course):
1. Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus/Katusha) 48 minutes and 46 seconds
2. Bert Grabsch (Ger/Columbia) + 1 min 23 secs
3. Niki Terpstra + 1min 59 secs

1227: And, of course, who is in possession of the jerseys:

White jersey
Polka dot jersey
Green jersey
Yellow jersey
TOUR DE FRANCE 2009 AFTER STAGE 17:

Yellow jersey: Alberto Contador (Spa/Astana)
Green jersey: Thor Hushovd (Nor/Cervelo)
Polka dot jersey: Franco Pellizotti (Ita/Liquigas)
White jersey: Andy Schleck (Lux/Saxo Bank)

1225: Just a reminder of how things stand at the top of the GC....

Yellow jersey
GENERAL CLASSIFICATION AFTER STAGE 17:
1. Alberto Contador (Spa/Astana) 72 hrs 27 mins 09 seconds
2. Andy Schleck (Lux/Saxo Bank) + 2 mins 26 secs
3. Frank Schleck (Lux/Saxo Bank) + 3 mins 25 secs
4. Lance Armstrong (USA/Astana) + 3 min 55 secs
5. Andreas Kloden (Ger/Astana) + 4 mins 44secs
6. Bradley Wiggins(GB/Garmin) + 4 min 53 secs

Get involved on 606
1220: Tpott55 on 606: "Black clouds over the lake and a good chance for rain. Ignatiev quickest so far by a couple minutes, expect the quickest time to be low 46's or maybe high 45's. My tip for today will have to be split, either Contador or Cancellara."

1218: And some other riders worth watching out for:

Fabian Cancellara 1242
David Millar 1256
Charles Wegelius 1325
Cadel Evans 1422
Nicolas Roche 1438

1216: Here's the departure times (BST) of all the big-hitters in the General Classification today:

Vincenzo Nibali 1529
Bradley Wiggins 1532
Andreas Kloden 1535
Lance Armstrong 1538
Frank Schleck 1541
Andy Schleck 1544
Alberto Contador 1547

Mark Cavendish
1214: The lower-ranked riders in the General Classification started out on the time trial a couple of hours ago - I'll bring you the top five finishers so far soon, but first news of Mark Cavendish - He is 23rd out of 35 finishers so far, with a time of 54 minutes. Fastest so far is Russia's Mikhail Ignatiev, who clocked 48 minutes and 46 seconds.

Get involved on 606
1211: BBC Radio 5 Live's Alex Murray on 606: "Reports from out on the course (twittering journos mainly) suggest it could be windy out on the course with potential for rain which will have an effect on times."

1210: Today's route is a 40.5km circuit of the picturesque Lake Annecy - the first 25km are flat, followed by a climb up the Col de Bluffy and a descent to the finish. There are time checks at 18km (Doussard) and 28.5km.

It's good news for a British rider
Bradley Wiggins
1208: Yep, Britain's Bradley Wiggins will look at Thursday's time trial around Lake Annecy as a way of boosting his hopes of a place on the podium in Paris. Wiggo slipped from third to sixth overall after Wednesday's gruelling stage from Bourg St Maurice to Le Grand Bornard, where the Schleck brothers (Andy and Frank) - plus Andreas Kloden - leapfrogged him in the General Classification.

But he has a chance of repairing some, if not all, of that damage today...

1205 BST: Right then. It's time to find out whether Wiggo has got anything left in the tank after his efforts in the Alps...




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see also
Wiggins boosts Tour podium hopes
23 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Contador moves closer to Tour win
22 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Contador keeps hold of Tour lead
21 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Contador wary of Wiggins threat
21 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Wiggins may quit track for Tour
20 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Contador storms to win and yellow
19 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Tour de France week three photos
24 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Ivanov wins as Hincapie moves up
18 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Tour de France week two photos
17 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Tour de France ones to watch
03 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Understanding the Tour de France
03 Jul 09 |  Cycling


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