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Page last updated at 08:23 GMT, Tuesday, 29 June 2010 09:23 UK

Lance Armstrong announces Tour de France retirement

Tour de France 2010
Start: 3 July, Rotterdam Finish: 25 July, Paris
Coverage: Listen to the final hour of every stage on the BBC Sport website (UK only), with selected stages on BBC 5 live sports extra; Watch live on Eurosport and ITV4; Live text commentary each day on BBC Sport website

Lance Armstrong
Armstrong formed the RadioShack team last year

Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong has announced that the 2010 race will be his last.

The 38-year-old American made a return to the race last year after first announcing his retirement in 2005.

"This will be [my] final Tour de France. It's been a great ride. Looking forward to three great weeks," he announced on his Twitter page.

He came back from advanced testicular cancer to win the race a record seven straight times between 1999 and 2005.

He will ride for his RadioShack team in the race which begins in the Dutch city of Rotterdam on Saturday.

This year Armstrong has finished third in the Tours of Switzerland and Luxembourg while he crashed out of the Tour of California.

He dominated the international cycling scene throughout the first half of the last decade, beating Miguel Indurain's record of five consecutive Tour de France victories.

606: DEBATE

Armstrong, who won the world road championship in 1993, was given less than a 50-50 chance of survival after being diagnosed with testicular cancer in 1996 after the disease spread to his lungs and brain.

However, after an aggressive bout of chemotherapy, he made a full recovery and returned to the sport in early 1998.

He set up the Livestrong cancer charity which gained international coverage as the organisation's distinctive yellow wristbands were worn by millions of people worldwide.

Armstrong announced his return to the sport in 2008 and appeared on the Tour last year with the Astana team, ending up in third with then team-mate Alberto Contador securing victory.

His comeback also made headlines following a public dispute with Contador, culminating in the Texan announcing his departure from the Kazakh-backed team to create his own outfit, backed by American retailer RadioShack.

American Floyd Landis, who was banned for taking performance-enhancing drugs during his 2006 Tour victory, accused Armstrong of similar charges last month.

The claims were described in a statement by Armstrong's lawyers as "incredible concoctions".



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Illness hits Armstrong Tour plans
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Contador man to beat - Armstrong
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Armstrong team hits out at Landis
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Armstrong escapes serious injury
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Contador seals 2009 Tour victory
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Training with Lance Armstrong
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Armstrong to launch new US team
23 Jul 09 |  Cycling
Armstrong seals seventh Tour win
24 Jul 05 |  Cycling


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