American Lance Armstrong has won two of the last three daily stages to move into the lead of the Tour De France as the three week long bike race nears the proverbial homestretch. Armstrong will now wear the yellow jersey, which symbolizes the race's leader, during today's grueling L'Alpe d'Huez time trial in the Alps.
''It's exciting to take the yellow jersey,'' Armstrong said afterward. ''And it'll be a thrill to ride Alpe d'Huez in the jersey.'' And while he is definitely in the drivers seat for his record breaking 6th straight Tour win, Lance is not ready to concede anything. "It's not finished," he said. "Today wasn't easy."
Today's stage, the 16th of the race, is a 9.6 mile time trial that features 21 hairpin curves and nearly 8.6 miles of ascension at a grade of 7.9 percent.
Italian Ivan Basso trails Armstrong over all by 1:25, with German Andreas Klöden in third, 3:22 behind.
Basso may be the only one standing in his way. "We take him seriously," Armstrong said. "He's riding super strong and he's a rider we consider to be a threat and one of the brightest hopes for the future of the Tour de France."