25 Jul 2011

Australia celebrating first Tour de France champion in 108 years

4:31 pm on 25 July 2011

Australia's celebrating it's first Tour de France champion in 108 years with the achievement of Cadel Evans being ranked alongside the greatest moments in the country's rich sporting history.

Much of the sports media have compared Evans's breakthrough triumph to Australia winning sailing's America's Cup in 1983 to end the 132-year monopoly of the trophy by the United States.

Although at Evans at 34 is the oldest winner of cycling's most prestigious race since World War II, a leading Australian cycling coach thinks he could repeat his triumph.

Dave Sanders of the Victorian Institute of Sport who helped convince Evans to switch to road racing from mountain biking ten years ago believes if Evans looks after himself he could win another two Tour de France titles.

Australia declared a national holiday in the wake of the 1983 America's Cup success but prime minister Julia Gillard has ruled out a public holiday being given for Evans effort.