Gilbert wins Stage 1 of Tour de France

July 2, 2011 at 1:27 PM

LES HERBIERS, France, July 2 (UPI) -- The Tour de France kicked off Saturday with Belgium's Philippe Gilbert capturing the first stage of the cross-country cycling race.

Gilbert, one of the pre-race favorites, lived up to his billing with a time of 4 hours, 41 minutes, 31 seconds in the 118.9-mile dash from Passage du Gois to Mont des Alouettes.

Cadel Evans of Australia crossed the finish line 3 seconds behind Gilbert and 3 seconds ahead of Norwegian Thor Hushovd.

Defending champion Alberto Contador of Spain got caught in traffic after a late crash along the course and finished the day in 82nd place, 1 minute, 20 seconds behind Gilbert.

The race continues Sunday with a 14.2-mile race around the town of Les Essarts. The Tour culminates July 24.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more news from UPI.com
Related UPI Stories
share with facebook
share with twitter
Trending Stories