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Sunday, January 18, 2009

The comeback begins

In case you're wondering -- and I'm sure you are -- Lance Armstrong began his comeback today in the Tour Down Under. The seven-time Tour de France champion finished 64th, safely within the peloton in the Cancer Council Criterium in Adelaide, Australia, 24 seconds back of winner Robbie McEwen.

The criterium does not count, however, in the overall standings of the Tour Down Under. Racing begins in earnest Tuesday. Here's a short excerpt from the VeloNews account:
Those who doubted Armstrong’s ability to find his racing legs again should not have. For much of the hour-long criterium, he rode at the front, at ease, and as if he never left the sport, his legs still a willing slave to the rhythm of professional bike racing.

Toward the end, Armstrong slipped toward the back of the field.

"I'm glad it's over," said the American, who is far more suited to stage racing than hectic criteriums where the threat of crashes is ever present.
If you're hoping to see Armstrong's exploits in Australia, Versus is probably your best bet. Versus will be airing half-hour highlight shows at 3 p.m. Central Time today, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and 2:30 p.m. Central Time on Saturday. Versus will air a full-hour show at 4 p.m. Central Time next Sunday (Jan. 25).

In addition, you can watch the final stage of the Tour Down Under live at 9 p.m. Central Time Saturday (Sunday afternoon in Australia) at Versus.com.

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