Thor Hushovd sprints uphill

The Norwegian sprint specialist clinches Friday's 13th stage of the Tour de France.

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The Norwegian sprint specialist Thor Hushovd showed his climbing abilities by winning Friday's 13th stage of the Tour de France, overtaking the Frenchman Jeremy Roy near the end after making up time on the downhill finish.

Roy thought he had clinched the first Tour stage win of his career by attacking at the foot of the huge climb to Col d'Aubisque, but he did not have a big enough gap to hold off Hushovd and David Moncoutie, who overtook Roy near the line. Moncoutie finished second.

"I really didn't think I would win this stage," said Hushovd, who is part of the Garmin-Cervelo team which won the team time trial early on in the race. Hushovd, a two-time winner of the Tour's green jersey for best sprinter, has worked hard on his climbing ability to become a more complete rider.

"It's the best stage I've ever won on the Tour de France," said Hushovd, who has nine individual stage victories and two more from team time trials.

Thomas Voeckler kept hold of the race leader's yellow jersey for another day heading into today's mammoth climbing stage. He was quick to praise Hushovd.

"Thor is the best climber among the sprinters," Voeckler said. "I'm not surprised by his performance."