Italy's Nibali Wins Tour de France

29-year-old is self-designated 'flag-bearer of anti-doping'

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Jul 27, 2014 12:36 PM CDT

(Newser) – Italy's Vincenzo Nibali has won the Tour de France, becoming the first Italian to win cycling's greatest race in 16 years by chiseling a lead over his main rivals a few seconds at a time and dominating them in the mountains. The 29-year-old Sicilian, who called himself "a flag-bearer of anti-doping" during the race, finished in the main pack behind Marcel Kittel, who won today's Stage 21 in a sprint finish. Nibali's victory comes after the pre-race favorites—2013 champion Chris Froome and two-time winner Alberto Contador—crashed out with injuries in the first half of the race. Nibali is only the sixth rider to win all three Grand Tours—France, Italy, and Spain—and is the first Italian to win the Tour de France since Marco Pantani in 1998.

Italy's Vincenzo Nibali, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, and France's Thibaut Pinot, wearing the best young rider's white jersey, wait  for the start of the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 137.5 kilometers (85.4 miles) with start in Evry and finish...
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, and France's Thibaut Pinot, wearing the best young rider's white jersey, wait for the start of the twenty-first and last stage of...   (Laurent Cipriani)
Vincenzo Nibali of Italy, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, left,  chats with Peter Sagan of Slovakia, wearing the best sprinter's green jersey, right. as they cycle at the front of the field at the start of the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France cycling race over...
Vincenzo Nibali of Italy, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, left, chats with Peter Sagan of Slovakia, wearing the best sprinter's green jersey, right. as they cycle at the front of the field...   (Christophe Ena)
Team Astana with Italy's Vincenzo Nibali, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey,  celebrates with a glass of champagne during the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 137.5 kilometers (85.4 miles) with start in Evry and finish in Paris, France, Sunday, July 27,...
Team Astana with Italy's Vincenzo Nibali, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, celebrates with a glass of champagne during the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France cycling race over...   (Jean-Paul Pelissier)
Vincenzo Nibali of Italy, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, second right,  Peter Sagan of Slovakia, wearing the best sprinter's green jersey, right. Rafal Majka of Poland, wearing the best climber's dotted jersey, left and Thibaut Pinot of France, wearing the best young rider's white jersey, cycle at the front...
Vincenzo Nibali of Italy, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, second right, Peter Sagan of Slovakia, wearing the best sprinter's green jersey, right. Rafal Majka of Poland, wearing the best climber's...   (Christophe Ena)
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, passes the Arc de Triomphe during the last stage of the Tour de France over 85.4 miles in Paris, France, Sunday, July 27, 2014.
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, passes the Arc de Triomphe during the last stage of the Tour de France over 85.4 miles in Paris, France, Sunday, July 27, 2014.   (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali celebrates with a glass of champagne during the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France in Paris, France, Sunday, July 27, 2014.
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali celebrates with a glass of champagne during the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France in Paris, France, Sunday, July 27, 2014.   (AP Photo/Jean-Paul Pelissier, Pool)
2014 Tour de France cycling race winner Italy's Vincenzo Nibali is congratulated by teammates as he crosses the finish line of the Tour de France in Paris, Sunday, July 27, 2014.
2014 Tour de France cycling race winner Italy's Vincenzo Nibali is congratulated by teammates as he crosses the finish line of the Tour de France in Paris, Sunday, July 27, 2014.   (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali races on the Champs Elysees during the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France in Paris, Sunday, July 27, 2014.
Italy's Vincenzo Nibali races on the Champs Elysees during the twenty-first and last stage of the Tour de France in Paris, Sunday, July 27, 2014.   (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)
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