LeMond returns to the Tour de France
Posted: Sunday July 26, 1998 05:43 PM
GRENOBLE, France (AP) -- Three-time winner Tour de France winner Greg LeMond returned to the cycling race as a competitor of cars instead of bicycles.
It was the first time back to the Tour for LeMond since he retired from competition in 1994 due to a rare muscular disease called mitochondria myopathy, which saps his strength.
"I am doing all right. I can never return to very good form. If I do a hard program, I would be tired afterwards," LeMond said
LeMond won the tour in 1986, 1989 and 1990, but fell to seventh in 1991, failed to finish in 1992 and 1994, and did not compete in 1993.
He said he is now racing cars in the Formula 2000 class.
"I am in my second year of racing. I have gotten third twice. I am close to the top 3-4. It's very competitive with 30-40 cars," LeMond said.
LeMond said he is now acting as a guide for a charity group and plans to show them l'Alpe d'Huez in the next few days.
L'Alpe d'Huez was the scene of one of the most memorable moments in Tour de France history. In 1986, LeMond and Bernard Hinault rode up the mountain together. Hinault, a five-time winner, was helping LeMond win his first tour title.
On the final stretch, LeMond let Hinault go ahead for the stage victory and LeMond went on to take the overall victory.
AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) -- Didier Auriol of France holds a slender lead going into Monday's final day of the Rally of New Zealand following a water-logged day of competition Sunday.
While torrential rain caused the cancellation of two stages in Northland, the 40-year-old Auriol reveled in the conditions to establish a 30-second lead over his Spanish teammate, Carlos Sainz.
Auriol had started the day with a two-second lead over Sainz, with world championship leader Colin McRae of Scotland in a Subaru in third place. The Frenchman was quickest on five of the day's eight stages in the auto competition, including a stage record at Ararua where he was 10 seconds quicker than anyone else.
Sainz, who was fastest in the three stages Auriol didn't win, switched to his teammate's tire choice and held a 14-second lead over third-placed Richard Burns in a Mitsubishi.
ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- Duke guard Trajan Langdon has been added to the United States basketball team that will compete in the Men's World Championships July 29-Aug. 9.
Langdon is replacing Michigan State's Mateen Cleaves, who sprained his left ankle in Saturday night's exhibition win over Italy.
Langdon was among the 15 finalists for the U.S. team who trained earlier this month in Monte Carlo, Monaco. He averaged 4.0 points and 1.0 rebounds a game in 20 minutes of action against France and Spain.
Sixteen teams will compete in the World Championship.
GOTEMBA, Japan (AP) -- Aki Nakano surged ahead of overnight leader Pat Hurst with a 5-under-par 67 Sunday and won the Sumitomo Visa Taiheiyo Club Ladies tournament by three strokes.
Nakano's final round of seven birdies and two bogeys gave her an 8-under 208 total. Yuri Fudo moved into second place at 211 by matching Nakano's 67, the day's best score.
Hurst, winner of this season's Nabisco Dinah Shore, the equivalent of the men's Masters, struggled to a 74, three-putting three holes, en route to 212. She had started the final round three strokes ahead of Nakano.
The victory, Nakano's sixth overall but first since April 1996, was worth $77,000 from a purse of $428,000.
AOMORI, Japan (AP) -- Hidemichi Tanaka fired a 6-under-par 66 Sunday and won the Aiful Cup by one stroke, his first victory in two years.
Tanaka birdied the first two holes and sank four more birdies on the back nine for a 15-under 273 total. He started the round three shots off the pace.
Tatsuo Takasaki tied for the day's best score, 66, and shared second place at 274 with overnight co-leader Toshimitsu Izawa, who had a 70.
Tanaka received $128,000 from a purse of $714,000 for the victory, his third in seven years as a pro.
Steven Conran of Australia, the other co-leader after the third round, had a 73 and fell into a three-way tie for 10th at 277. He had led for the first three rounds, seeking his first victory since joining the Japan tour two years ago.
Masashi "Jumbo" Ozaki, who was in contention for his 108th career title and his second victory in two weeks, also shot a 73 and was in a group of five sharing 14th at 279.
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