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Top 10 time: Floyd makes the grade

By Tim Maloney, European Editor in Paris

After he completed his fourth Grande Boucle yesterday, Floyd Landis explained to Cyclingnews that he was happy with his race, as he ended up 9th overall at 12'44 from Lance Armstrong. "I was happy with my final time trial on Saturday, based on all the energy I spent trying to stay in the front during the Tour. And I'm pretty satisfied with where I finished. Being in the top ten was an objective before the Tour, and looking back on the way things went, I'm happy with it. I think I did everything I had to and I learned some things and I'll go from here. I had some good days and some not so good days, but no terrible days."

As for his supposed conflict with Lance Armstrong, Floyd wanted to clarify things: "I think my comments from L'Equipe [about Armstrong being more about business than friendship] were taken out of context or misunderstood...first of all, I just want to thank Lance and Johan and the team for everything they did for me. That's it."

Landis didn't take offense at Armstrong's comments that even though he would not be racing any more, his Discovery Channel team would still ride against Floyd. "It's the same feeling in the peloton. We're all impressed with what he's accomplished winning seven Tours. I was there for three of them and it seemed miraculous. How he could do it seven times is beyond me! He deserves it and congratulations to him. That's what everyone wants to say to Lance."

We asked Landis what's next for him in the 2005 season and the Phonak rider told us, "I'm going back to California for a while to rest and recover after the Tour. I'm happy about that. In September, I think I'll do the Vuelta (a España) again. I like the race a lot and it's less stressful than the Tour; not the racing part, but the rest of it."

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