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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
LeMond is first American to win Tour de France
By Larry Schwartz
Special to ESPN.com


July 27, 1986

It's great to be an American in Paris, especially if you're Greg LeMond. The 25-year-old cyclist becomes the first American - the first non-European - to win the Tour de France since it was first held in 1903.

LeMond, who was born in Reno and lives in Sacramento in the offseason, cruises across the finish line at the Champs Elysees after racing 2,500 miles since July 4 over a course that included stretches of the Alps and Pyrenees. His total elapsed time of 110 hours, 36 minutes and 19 seconds is three minutes and 10 seconds faster than five-time winner Bernard Hinault, a French teammate on the Vie Claire team.

"Wonderful, it just feels wonderful," says LeMond. "I was nervous, but everything went perfect today." To the victor belongs the spoils and LeMond's winnings' include the deed to a resort apartment worth about $17,000, almost $26,000 in cash, a Sevres porcelain vase and a gold trophy studded with diamonds that is valued at $42,900.





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