It was family day Wednesday at the Tour de France.
Jan Ullrich retained the overall lead, while his mother, Marianne, who was visiting from Rostock, Germany, cheered her son. And Neil Stephens of Australia won the 17th stage, rocking a baby as he came across the finish line in honor of his daughter.
“I wanted to come to help him defend the yellow jersey,” Marianne Ullrich said. “I was nervous, even if he was riding over roads he knew well. He also had a lot of Germans on the roads and a lot of friends.”
The Tour passed within 18.6 miles of Merdingen, Germany, where Ullrich has lived for the past two years with his girlfriend Gaby.
The overall standings barely changed with four days remaining.
Ullrich is virtually certain of winning barring mishap or accident over the next four days.
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