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Seven-time champ in prerace spotlight

Updated: July 23, 2009, 6:53 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

PARIS -- The Tour de France hasn't even started and Lance Armstrong was squarely in the headlines Friday.

First, France's sports minister says Armstrong will be "particularly monitored" in anti-doping checks at the Tour de France this year.

Then, speaking in Monaco, where the Tour starts Saturday, defending champion Carlos Sastre said Armstrong could use a lesson in respect after the Texan reportedly called the race last year "a bit of a joke" in a book.

Sastre, ...

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