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Voeckler defends yellow jersey on stage 15

Updated: July 17, 2011, 09:11

LIMOUX, France (AP) French rider Thomas Voeckler defends the yellow jersey as 170 riders set off on the 15th stage of the Tour de France, a mostly flat route favoring sprinters that follows three grueling days of climbs in the Pyrenees.

The 32-year-old Voeckler has had the lead since the crash-marred ninth stage.

Barring an accident, Voeckler should still be in yellow after the 120-mile route from Limoux to Montpellier that favors the likes of Britain's Mark Cavendish, who wears the sprint leader's green jersey.

Defending champion Alberto Contador got through the Pyrenees without losing much time to rivals Andy Schleck and Cadel Evans - both two-time runners-up.

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