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(Reuters) - France's Pierrick Fedrigo won the 199.5-km 16th stage of the Tour de France from Bagneres de Luchon on Tuesday.

Frenchman Sandy Casar was second and Spain's Ruben Plaza came third.

Spain's Alberto Contador retained the overall lead.


Stage 16 Results
1 Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom - 5:31:43
2 Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux
3 Ruben Plaza Molina (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne
4 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini
5 Christopher Horner (USA) Team Radioshack
6 Lance Armstrong (USA) Team Radioshack
7 Jurgen Van De Walle (Bel) Quick Step
8 Christophe Moreau (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne
9 Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step - 0:00:28
10 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team - 0:06:45


General classification after Stage 16
1 Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana - 78:29:10
2 Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank - 0:00:08
3 Samuel Sánchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi - 0:02:00
4 Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank - 0:02:13
5 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto - 0:03:39
6 Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank - 0:05:01
7 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Team Radioshack - 0:05:25
8 Joaquin Rodriguez (Spa) Team Katusha - 0:05:45
9 Alexander Vinokourov (Kaz) Astana - 0:07:12
10 Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Transitions - 0:07:51

Full results here..


Jersey Standings:
Alberto Contador
Thor Hushovd
Anthony Charteau
Andy Schleck


Links to news sites...

"Fedrigo hits France for six as Contador unchallenged
By Justin Davis (AFP) -

PAU, France - Pierrick Fedrigo of the Bbox-Bouygues team held off the threat of seven-time champion Lance Armstrong to hand the hosts their sixth success on the Tour de France 16th stage Tuesday.

Astana's race leader Alberto Contador, who took the yellow jersey from Luxembourg rival Andy Schleck on Monday, came over the finish line just under seven minutes later.

Schleck, who lost the yellow jersey to Contador after suffering a mechanical problem on Monday's 15th stage, was expected to take his revenge on what was the third and penultimate day of racing in the Pyrenees.

But their anticipated battle over the Tourmalet and Aubisque mountain passes came to nothing after Armstrong and other riders well out of contention joined an early breakaway.

The Luxemburger, who rides for Saxo Bank, is still 08sec behind Spain's two-time champion ahead of the race's second and final rest day and two days before the final day of climbing to the summit of the Tourmalet on stage 17.

A day after they fell out because Contador attacked as Schleck tried to fix his mechanical setback, the pair had shaken hands and made up.

But Schleck warned: "It's the last week of the Tour and I'm sure that we'll be battling a lot on the (Col du) Tourmalet," he said. "The Tour is not over."

Fedrigo had to chase hard to join Armstrong's early breakaway group as the peloton started the hilly 199.5km ride from Bagneres-de-Luchon with the brutal 11km climb to the Col de Peyresourde." Read more from the AFP...

"Fedrigo denies Armstrong Tour de France stage win

PAU, France - Pierrick Fedrigo denied Lance Armstrong a stage win in his final Tour de France on Tuesday.

The Frenchman won a sprint finish in a group of nine that included Armstrong, who had attacked repeatedly from the beginning of Tuesday's 16th stage. Both finished the 124 miles from Bagneres-de-Luchon to Pau in 5 hours, 31 minutes, 43 seconds.

"It was harder than I expected. It's been a while since I sprinted," Armstrong said.

"Just not quick enough."

Armstrong finished sixth in the stage and acknowledged that his career was close to coming to an end. He had announced this month that it would be his final Tour de France.

"Lance Armstrong is over in about four days," he said.

Fedrigo finished ahead of Frenchman Sandy Casar, with Ruben Plaza of Spain in third place. It was the third straight French victory in this year's race." Read more from the AP...

"Armstrong steals show on classic Pyrenees climb
By Julien Pretot

France (Reuters) - Lance Armstrong stole the show during the picturesque 199.5km 16th stage of the Tour de France won by France's Pierrick Fedrigo in Pau on Tuesday.

The seven-times champion, whose hopes of an eighth Tour win were dashed after a crash in the Alps during stage eight, proved he was still a force to be reckoned with when he attacked from the gun in Bagneres de Luchon and stayed at the front all day.

The American sprinted in the final stretch but, at nearly 39, was forced to let Fedrigo, compatriot Sandy Casar and Spain's Ruben Plaza battle it out for the day's laurels.

While Armstrong finished sixth in the stage, six minutes and 45 seconds ahead of the peloton, Fedrigo gave France a sixth stage win in this Tour ahead of compatriot Casar.

Tour leader and holder Alberto Contador of Spain retained his eight-seconds overall lead from Luxembourg's Andy Schleck as the two favorites preserved energy for a potentially decisive showdown at the top of the Tourmalet in Thursday's 17th stage.

The long ride celebrated the 100th anniversary of the first stage in the Pyrenees and included the four climbs on the course that year, Peyresourde, Aspin, Tourmalet and Aubisque.

Fittingly Armstrong, the most celebrated rider on the Tour who came back after battling near-fatal cancer to win a record seven titles from 1999 to 2005, took center stage while rivals Contador and Schleck played second fiddle at the back." Read more from the Reuters...