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Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay makes Tour de France history

Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay makes Tour de France history

Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay achieved a historic milestone by becoming the first black African cyclist to win a stage in the Tour de France. He sprinted to victory in the third stage of the cycling event to secure the win on Monday.

Girmay said his victory was “for all Africans.”

“We have to be proud now. We are really part of the big races,” Girmay said. “Now is our moment. It’s our time.”

The victory came on the third day and was the longest stage of this year’s race, which was 230.8 kilometres (about 143 miles) long and ran from Piacenza to Turin.

It was the first chance for a bunch sprint and Girmay had the perfect moment to beat Colombian Fernando Gaviria and Belgian Arnaud de Lie, who finished second and third respectively.

“My first Tour last year gave me experience and I can handle everything better. Winning today is unbelievable,” he said.

In the general classification, Ecuadorian Carapaz took over the yellow leader’s jersey from one of the Tour’s favorites, Tadej Pogacar.

Girmay became the first African to win a one-day classic in Gent-Wevelgem, at the age of 21. It was his second victory in a grand tour after the Giro d’Italia in 2022. “To be honest, I knew going into the Giro that I had the level to fight for the win, but for the Tour I thought I had to wait a bit longer.
(until) 2025, 2026.

“To win a stage where all the best sprint specialists are there is unbelievable,” he said on Monday. South Africans Robbie Hunter and Daryl Impey are the only two other Africans to have ever won a stage in the Tour de France. Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome was born in Kenya but rode for Great Britain.

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