Lance Armstrong, who is 20 days away from beginning his challenge for a record sixth win in the Tour de France, finished only fourth in the Alpine
race, the Dauphine-Libere yesterday.
His result will be seen as disappointing because a pair of his most dangerous rivals, Iban Mayo of Spain and another American, Tyler Hamilton, took
the top two places overall.
Armstrong, 32, has won the Dauphine for the past two years, using the race which crosses mountain roads similar to the Tour de France to fine-tune
himself for the July marathon. His chances of winning this time ended in Provence on Thursday when he lost a lot of time during the individual
time-trial up Mont Ventoux.
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