The old days of Lance Armstrong’s team controlling the Tour de France are over. His RadioShack team suffered at the hands of Saxo Bank in Tuesday’s stage three to Arenberg, letting Andy Schleck’s Saxo Bank hammer at the head over the cobbled roads.

Without RadioShack at the front, Armstrong was vulnerable to losing time to crashes or mechanicals. In sector four, Sars-et-Rosières, disaster struck. Andy Schleck’s brother, Fränk, crashed and held up Armstrong. Unlike many other favourites, though, Armstrong lost further time to a punctured tyre.

When Armstrong ruled the Tour de France for seven years (1999 to 2005), he kept his US Postal/Discovery Channel team on the front at all times to avoid such mishaps. Today, though, RadioShack showed it lacked strength or perhaps lacked faith in their leader’s ability.

“That’s just the nature of the sport,” said Armstrong. “Some times you’re the hammer and sometimes you’re the nail. Today I was the nail, but I had plenty of days where I was the hammer.”

He continued to rattle off clichés, perhaps preparing for a political career. First though, he plans on fighting for Tour de France win number eight, making up his one minute and 21 second deficit to Schleck.

Armstrong said, “I am not going home.”

Tour de France 2010: Latest news



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The Feed Zone: Tour news and views (July 6)



Vande Velde abandons Tour following crash



Andy Schleck has a laugh after stage two crash



The Feed Zone: News and views (July 5)



Sky banks on Thomas ahead of cobbled stage



Cavendish’s sprint train weakened with Hansen out



Armstrong under fire as Landis allegations reach mainstream



Team Sky’s decision to put Wiggins off early back fires

Tour de France 2010: Stage reports



Stage three: Hushovd takes dramatic win; Thomas second on stage and GC



Stage three live coverage: As it happened



Stage two: Comeback man Chavanel takes victory in Spa



Stage one: Petacchi wins in Brussels as bunch left in tatters



Prologue: Cancellara pips Martin to win

Tour de France 2010: Photos



Stage three photo gallery



Stage two photo gallery



Stage one gallery



Prologue photo gallery

Tour de France 2010: Videos



Stage three video highlights



Stage two video highlights



Stage one video highlights



Prologue video highlights

Tour de France 2010: Race guide



Tour de France 2010: Cycling Weekly’s coverage index



Official start list, with race numbers



Brits at the Tour 2010



Tout team guide



Tour jerseys: What they are and what they mean



Brits in the Tours: From Robinson to Wiggins

Tour de France 2010: Pictures



Tour team presentation, Rotterdam



Tour teams take to the cobbles: Photo special