Mon, Jul 24, 3:02pm by Head Editor
Chris Froome won the Tour de France for the fourth time early on Monday morning Australian time, while Australia’s Michael Matthews won his maiden green jersey after safely navigating his way through the 21st and final stage of this year’s race.
Dylan Groenewegen sprinted to victory in the final stage, just beating Andre Greipel, but the day belonged to the 32-year-old Brit, who now sits just one win behind four legendary riders – Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain – who’ve won the greatest Cycling race in the world five times.
Lance Armstrong won the race seven times, but those results have been nullified after he admitted to doping. Froome did not win a stage this year – becoming only the seventh rider to win a Tour without one.
Matthews’ green jersey win was also cemented on Paris’ Champs Elysees, and beamed with pride when he walked onto the podium with the Australian flag wrapped around his shoulders.
The Team Sunweb rider is the first Australian to win the green jersey since Robbie McEwen in 2006, and told the Herald Sun that he hopes that the win will inspire the next generation of Aussie sprinters.
The Canberra-native won stage 14 and 16, and then hit the lead after German sprinter Marcel Kittel crashed and was forced to abandon the race on stage 17. Until that point, the sprinters competition was shaping up to be very tight.
France’s Warren Barguil won the polka dot jersey for the best climber, after winning two stages in the mountains. The Team Sunweb rider may be on the move from the German-registered squad so he can secure a clear leadership role elsewhere.
The next event for the riders comes next month when the Vuelta a Espana begins in Nimes, France, and ends in Madrid, Spain three weeks later. The favourite for that event is, surprise, surprise, Chris Froome, at $1.80.
Vuelta a Espana Winner
Chris Froome $1.80
Alberto Contador $6
Vincenzo Nibali $7
Ilnur Zakarin $13
Miguel Angel Lopez $13
Fabio Aru $19
Esteban Chaves $26
Steven Kruijswijk $34
Rafal Majka $34
Simon Yates $34
Sergio Henao $51
Samuel Sanchez $67
Wout Poels $67
Marc Soler $67
Ruben Fernandez $67
Primoz Roglic $67
Domenico Pozzovivo $67
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