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Frenchman wins 18th stage

L’ALPE D’HUEZ, France – Frenchman Christophe Riblon caught American Tejay van Garderen near the end of the final climb to win today’s 18th stage of the Tour de France, while Chris Froome extended his overall lead despite a late struggle.

Riblon gave home fans something to finally cheer about by becoming the first Frenchman to win a stage on this year’s race, catching Van Garderen with about two kilometres remaining on the day’s second climb up L’Alpe d’Huez – one of the Tour’s most famed climbs.

Riblon raised his hands in the air and pumped his fists after crossing the line.

Froome extended his comfortable lead over his main rival Alberto Contador with just three stages remaining of the world’s premier cycling event that ends this Sunday.

The 172.5-kilometre (107-mile) trek from Gap to L’Alpe d’Huez featured two HC ascents of L’Alpe d’Huez.

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