Valverde takes Vuelta lead with a Stage 3 victory
EIBAR, Spain – Alejandro Valverde of Movistar took the overall lead at the Spanish Vuelta on Monday after winning the third stage in a photo finish.
Valverde edged fellow Spaniard Joaquim Rodriguez at the end of the 96-mile mountain stage from Faustino V to a summit finish in the Basque town of Eibar.
Christopher Froome of Team Sky and Alberto Contador of SaxoBank were next, followed by a group of riders six seconds behind who finished in a time of 3 hours, 49 minutes, 37 seconds.
Valverde, who won the 2009 Vuelta before serving a two-year doping ban, took the red leader’s jersey with a 19-second lead over Rodriguez.
Today’s fourth stage is a 99-mile ride from Barakaldo to Estacion de Valdezcaray.
The 21-stage race will finish Sept. 9 in Madrid.
Judge dismisses Armstrong’s case against the USADA
NEW YORK – A federal judge in Austin, Texas, threw out Lance Armstrong’s lawsuit against the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, an attempt to stop the drug case against the seven-time Tour de France winner.
Armstrong repeatedly has denied doping. His lawsuit claimed USADA lacked jurisdiction and that its arbitration process violates his constitutional rights.
U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks dismissed the lawsuit, allowing the case to proceed. Armstrong can appeal in federal court, go ahead with USADA’s arbitration or accept its sanctions.
USADA said Armstrong took steroids and blood boosters to win the Tour de France every year from 1999 to 2005. Penalties could include a lifetime ban from the sport and loss of his titles.
After Sunday’s rain, Garcia soaks in a win at Wyndham
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Sergio Garcia claimed a two-stroke victory Monday in the rain-delayed Wyndham Championship to earn his first PGA Tour victory since the 2008 Players Championship.
Garcia finished with a 66 to wind up at 18-under 262 and claim $936,000 in prize money.
Tim Clark was at 16 under after his 67 in the final tour event before the playoffs, and Bud Cauley finished 15 under after his 68.
Garcia led both after the third round and when the fourth round was held up overnight because of a persistent downpour. He had three consecutive late-round birdies after a bogey briefly dropped him into a tie for the lead and cruised to his eighth career PGA victory.
In addition to the quests by players on both sides for Ryder Cup selections, much of the focus – as it always is at the tour’s annual late-season stop in central North Carolina was on the chase to make the FedEx Cup playoffs, which will begin in a few days at The Barclays.
UEFA bans two for doping, one player for match fixing
NYON, Switzerland – European soccer’s governing body has imposed one-year bans on two players from the Macedonian club Rabotnicki after they failed drug tests.
The Union of European Football Associations said Monday that Milovan Petrovic and Dino Najdoski failed drugs tests at a Europa League match against Lazio on Aug. 18, 2011.
The substance involved was not identified, but Macedonian media reported it is the stimulant methylhexaneamine.
UEFA suspended Rabotnicki’s physiotherapist and club doctor for three and two years, respectively, and said it will ask FIFA to apply the suspensions worldwide.
Malta’s soccer association said UEFA banned its player Kevin Sammut 10 years for helping to fix a 2008 European Championship qualifying match.
Sammut has denied helping to manipulate the result of Malta’s 4-0 loss at Norway in June 2007.
The Malta FA said the UEFA disciplinary verdict bans Sammut from “any football-related activity.”
The 31-year-old Sammut can challenge the sanction at UEFA’s appeals panel.