Bradley Wiggins Wins 2012 Tour de France as Mark Cavendish Takes Final Stage

News & Results

07/22/2012| 0 comments
by AP and Roadcycling.com
Team Sky Procycling's Bradley Wiggins takes overall Tour de France victory and is the new Tour de France Champion. Wiggins' teammate Christopher Froome finishes 2nd overall and Vincenzo Nibali of Team Liquigas-Cannondale rounds off the podium. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.
Team Sky Procycling's Bradley Wiggins takes overall Tour de France victory and is the new Tour de France Champion. Wiggins' teammate Christopher Froome finishes 2nd overall and Vincenzo Nibali of Team Liquigas-Cannondale rounds off the podium. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.

Bradley Wiggins Wins 2012 Tour de France as Mark Cavendish Takes Final Stage

Bradley Wiggins became the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France by protecting the yellow jersey during Sunday's final processional ride into Paris. He also helped Sky teammate Mark Cavendish earn his fourth straight sprint victory on the Champs-Elysees.

Bradley Wiggins became the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France by protecting the yellow jersey during Sunday's final processional ride into Paris. He also helped Sky teammate Mark Cavendish earn his fourth straight sprint victory on the Champs-Elysees.

Wiggins secured his win with a dominating performance in Saturday's final time trial to extend his already commanding lead. Fellow Briton and Sky teammate Christopher Froome finished second, 3 minutes, 21 seconds behind overall. Vincenzo Nibali of Italy finished third, 6:19 off the pace.

"It's hard to take in as it happens. Every lap of the Champs-Elysees today was goose-pimple stuff. It's been a magical couple of weeks for the team and for British cycling," Wiggins told Roadcycling.com and added "Some dreams come true. My mother over there, she's now - her son has won the Tour de France."

"I've had 24 hours for this to soak in and today we were just on a mission to finish the job off with Cavendish. So job done and what a way for him to finish it off. I'm still buzzing."

"I've got to get used to going into the history books now, but I'm just trying to take everything in today first. It's very surreal at the moment because this type of thing happens to other people. You never imagine it happening to yourself," Wiggins concluded.

The last time two riders from the same nation finished first and second in the Tour de France was in 1984, when Frenchman Laurent Fignon defeated Bernard Hinault in a legendary battle.

Wiggins congratulated his teammates after crossing the line, gave a big hug to his wife and clutched the hands of their children.

The 32-year-old lanky Londoner blew kisses and bowed to a sea of union jacks along the Champs-Elysees and on the Place de la Concorde.

After a soprano sang "God Save The Queen", Wiggins thanked the crowd with a touch of British humor.

"Cheers, have a safe journey home, don't get too drunk," said Wiggins, who wrote in his autobiography about overcoming drinking problems after his early successes in the Velodrome.

Cavendish claimed his 23rd Tour stage win and third this year. He also became the first reigning world champion to win on the Champs-Elysees.

As expected, Wiggins repaid Cavendish for his efforts earlier in the race and led the Sky train in the final mile of the 74-mile stage before leaving his place to Edvald Boasson Hagen, who delivered a perfect lead-out for Cavendish.

Cavendish accelerated coming out of the final corner, never looked back and raised four fingers as he crossed the finish line.

The seven stage wins was a record haul for British riders in the Tour, beating the previous record of six stage wins in 2009 - when all were won by Cavendish.

This time the victories were divided up between Cavendish (3), Wiggins (2), David Millar (1) and Froome (1).

Commenting on his own as well as Wiggins' success in the 2012 Tour de France, Cavendish told Roadcycling.com "It's incredible what we've achieved today - what a team.

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