Sporting Digest: Cycling

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The Independent Online
Britain's Chris Boardman took the 5km Dauphine Libere Criterium prologue in Villeurbanne yesterday in a time of 5min 40:23secs. The 29- year-old prevailed by the slimmest of margins, edging out France's Christophe Moreau by 48 hundredths of a second.

Marco Pantani clinched his first Giro d'Italia yesterday after race judges ruled that the final stage would not count towards the overall standings. The Italian had virtually wrapped up the 1998 Giro a day earlier after increasing his lead over Russia's Pavel Tonkov to 1 minute, 33seconds, and yesterday's stage was expected to be a celebratory ride. Rainy conditions prompted the jury to annul the day's results about five hours into the stage to prevent racers from riding too fast and risk falling on the slippery roads.