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Voeckler tries to hold onto yellow jersey

Updated: July 19, 2011, 07:27


SAINT-PAUL-TROIS-CHATEAUX, France (AP) French rider Thomas Voeckler led the Tour de France after the second and final race rest day as the pack heads out on the hilly 16th stage from Saint-Paul-Trois-Chateaux to Gap, with title contenders hoping to save energy before hard days in the Alps later this week.

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 101-mile route that includes only one significant climb, the col de Manse, near the finish.

The fast run-in to Gap takes the 170 remaining riders down the La Rochette descent made famous in 2003 when Spanish rider Joseba Beloki took a nasty fall on sticky tarmac, forcing Lance Armstrong to swerve dramatically and dash across a bumpy field to rejoin the race.

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