Sarkozy's Collapse Doesn't Steal Tour's Thunder France's President Nicolas Sarkozy has left the hospital. He collapsed Sunday while jogging in the heat. The presidential palace says tests have found nothing wrong but he stayed in the hospital overnight for observation. In Paris Sunday, Spain's Alberto Contador won the Tour de France for the second time in three years. Lance Armstrong was third.
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Sarkozy's Collapse Doesn't Steal Tour's Thunder

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Sarkozy's Collapse Doesn't Steal Tour's Thunder

Sarkozy's Collapse Doesn't Steal Tour's Thunder

Sarkozy's Collapse Doesn't Steal Tour's Thunder

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/111046659/111046643" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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France's President Nicolas Sarkozy has left the hospital. He collapsed Sunday while jogging in the heat. The presidential palace says tests have found nothing wrong but he stayed in the hospital overnight for observation. In Paris Sunday, Spain's Alberto Contador won the Tour de France for the second time in three years. Lance Armstrong was third.

RENEE MONTAGNE, Host:

Eleanor Beardsley sends this report.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

ELEANOR BEARDSLEY: Unidentified Man: (Foreign language spoken) Lance Armstrong.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

BEARDSLEY: During the three weeks and more than 2000 miles of grueling mountain climbs, baking heat and withering time trials, Armstrong showed he's got what it takes to win, but he also showed he's got what it takes to lose. Eventually recognizing his teammate Alberto Contador is the better rider, Armstrong worked to support him. That and other gestures transformed him in the eyes of the public says Jean Simon, who writes for the French sports newspaper L'Equipe.

JEAN SIMON: (Through French Translator) He completely seduced the French public. He used to be considered arrogant, dominating and not a sympathetic person, but this year that all changed because he was relaxed, fun, he didn't take himself so seriously, and he lost. That made him human.

(SOUNDBITE OF CROWDS)

BEARDSLEY: Massive crowds poured out on to Paris' most famous avenue, the Les Champs-Élysées for the finish, including some Danish guys wearing a Viking helmets and singing.

(SOUNDBITE OF MEN SINGING)

BEARDSLEY: Their song might be about Lance but they're here to support Andy, that's rider Andy Schleck who came in second and rides for the Danish team Saxo Bank. But their group is also here to have a good time says Rasmus(ph) Olsen(ph).

RASMUS OLSEN: In the televisions in Denmark, people are watching. It's very popular, in fact. We were following the tour for a week now. It's amazing.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

BEARDSLEY: Armstrong announced that he will return to the Tour again next year, and cycling fan President Sarkozy is doing fine and will be released from the hospital this morning.

BEARDSLEY: For NPR News, I'm Eleanor Beardsley in Paris.

MONTAGNE: You are listening to MORNING EDITION from NPR News.

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