Bradley Wiggins won the Tour de France on Sunday to become the first British rider to claim cycling’s most prestigious race.
The race’s 20th and final stage took the riders over a leisurely 120 kilometres from Rambouillet to the French capital – a ride that was not to threaten the all-powerful Sky team and their leader’s title hopes.
The relaxed atmosphere only lasted until the peloton entered the historic city where the sprinters could sense the approaching Champs-Élysées.
And then the real racing began.
A handful of riders attacked around the circuit in the centre of Paris but they were soon caught.
Team Sky and Wiggins himself led the main bunch into the final kilometre where team-mate and fellow Brit Mark Cavendish outkicked the field to claim the final stage for the fourth consecutive time.
Wiggins crossed the line safely in the bunch and with the title safely in his pocket.
Cavendish, who has now surpassed Andre Darrigade and Lance Armstrong with 23 Tour stage wins, became the first reigning world champion to win on the Champs-Élysées.
Slovakian Peter Sagan won the points classification with second place while Australian Matt Goss was third.
Wiggins who held the leaders yellow jersey since stage seven finished three minutes and 21 seconds clear of Sky team-mate and compatriot Chris Froome.
Italian Vicenzo Nibali was a distant third at six minutes and 19 seconds.
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