By Laura Weislo in Escondido, California
After wrapping up his third win in a row in the Tour of California, American Levi Leipheimer seemed to be giving a press conference about the biggest victory of his career. It certainly may not have been his most prestigious win, but the rider and the race have grown in prominence and popularity over the past four years, and the importance of this year's Tour of California cannot be underestimated.
His two previous wins in California came with increasing fanfare, but with the return of one Lance Armstrong to the peloton, the attention surrounding the race grew to a fevered pitch, making Leipheimer's triple title headline news. Leipheimer, a California resident, was hard pressed to put the sensation of this year's win into words.
"I've been trying in my head to think about how to articulate and convey the feelings I've got. It's tough. To win it once, that was huge. To win it twice, it was a little bit of a surprise and felt like I was a little lucky. Now I've won it three times - it's the sweetest of the three and it's hard to describe that."
Read the full feature on Leipheimer's win.