Schleck holds off Armstrong to win

Frank Schleck clinched overall victory ahead of Lance Armstrong on the final day of the Tour de Suisse.

Frank Schleck clinched overall victory ahead of Lance Armstrong on the final day of the Tour de Suisse.

Germany’s Tony Martin (HTC-Columbia) won today’s final 26.9-kilometres time-trial ahead of Fabian Cancellara (Team Saxo Bank), but Luxembourg’s Schleck (Team Saxo Bank) prevailed overall after overnight leader Robert Gesink (Rabobank) of Holland conceded the lead and finished fifth overall.

American Armstrong (Team RadioShack) moved up from seventh overall overnight as the seven-time Tour de France winner completed his preparations for cycling’s most prestigious race, which begins in Rotterdam on July 3.

The final stage time-trial around Liestal saw Gesink concede his 29-second advantage with a disastrous showing, as he limped in two minutes 19 seconds down in 40th place.

Schleck was 13th quickest on the day, 1min 14secs down on Martin, and Armstrong was 11th, five seconds faster.

But it was not enough for the Texan, who finished 12 seconds down on Schleck, with Jakob Fuglsang (Team Saxo Bank) in third.

“I was a little bit surprised myself that it went so well but the good thing about being on the same team as Fabian Cancellara is that you get to know a trick or two about time trialling and he said I could pull it off before the stage,” said Schleck, whose first thoughts were for compatriot Kim Kirchen (Katusha), who was yesterday rushed to hospital with a suspected heart problem.

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