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Sports news briefs
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• BRITAIN’S WIGGINS WINS CRITERIUM DU DAUPHINE: CHATEL, France (AP) — Britain’s Bradley Wiggins cemented his status as a Tour de France favorite Sunday, winning the Criterium du Dauphine race in the French Alps for the second straight year.

The three-time Olympic gold medalist successfully defended his title in the mountainous weeklong race, finishing 1 minute, 17 seconds ahead of Sky teammate Michael Rogers of Australia. Tour de France champion Cadel Evans was third, 1:26 behind Wiggins.

Wiggins said he was “not the favorite, but one of the favorites” for the Tour de France, which begins June 30 in Liege, Belgium.

“It’s a big win,” he said. “Everyone talks a lot about the Tour de France, but winning Paris-Nice and the Criterium du Dauphine in the same year, that’s huge. So whatever happens on the Tour, I can already be satisfied.”

Spain’s Daniel Moreno won the 77-mile seventh stage from Morzine to Chatel after making a late attack on the final climb. Luis Leon Sanchez of Spain and Evans were next.


• WIEBER AT HER STEADY BEST IN WINNING 2ND US TITLE: ST. LOUIS (AP) — Jordyn Wieber likes the challenge of a close competition.

Good thing, because it looks as if Gabby Douglas is going to be pushing her all the way to London.

The reigning world champion earned her second straight U.S. title Sunday, getting an assist when Douglas fell off the balance beam at the start of the meet. Wieber finished with 121.900 points, 0.2 ahead of Douglas.

Take away that mistake, and the competition might have looked a lot different.

Aly Raisman was third, further cementing her position as a must-have when the Americans are packing for the Olympics. Kyla Ross, a two-time junior champ, was fourth.


• BEARD: NO PLAN TO RETIRE IF SHE’S NO-GO FOR LONDON: OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Amanda Beard says she wants to make a U.S. Olympic team for a fifth time “pretty bad” but has no plans to retire from swimming if she doesn’t.

Beard finished the Mutual of Omaha Swimvitational with a second-place finish in the 100-meter breaststroke Sunday night. She was disqualified Friday in the 200 breaststroke, her specialty.

Ashley Wanland of the University of Wisconsin edged Beard in the 100, touching in 1 minute, 8.74 seconds — 0.12 seconds ahead of Beard.

Rebecca Soni, the 200 gold medalist in Beijing in 2008, is the prohibitive favorite to win again in London. Beard will be going for the second spot on the U.S. roster in the event.

The 30-year-old Beard says if she doesn’t make the 2012 team, it will motivate her for 2016.


• LEWIS HAMILTON WINS CANADIAN GRAND PRIX IN F1: MONTREAL (AP) — The Formula One winners’ club keeps getting bigger in an unprecedented season that has had seven different winners in the first seven races.

Lewis Hamilton thinks he is seeing the sport’s future.

“I think this mix-up is normal. I think this is going to be normal for this season,” he said after winning the Canadian Grand Prix for the third time. “I think it’s great for Formula One. It’s great for fans today.”

Hamilton drove his McLaren Mercedes to a win in 1 hour, 32 minutes, 29.586 seconds Sunday, taking advantage of fresh tires he picked up during a second pit stop while the other contenders only made one. Hamilton finished 2.5 seconds ahead of Lotus’ Romain Grosjean, with Sauber’s Sergio Perez in third.


• NEW CLASS INDUCTED INTO BOXING HALL: CANASTOTA, N.Y. (AP) — Al Bernstein stood in front of a thousand fans as he accepted his commemorative ring, and then took the podium at the 23rd International Boxing Hall of Fame’s induction ceremony on Sunday. Behind him sat a “who’s who” of boxing legends.

But on this day, the stage belonged to six in particular that made up the 2012 class: Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns, Mark “Too Sharp” Johnson, trainer Freddie Roach, ring announcer Michael Buffer, writer Michael Katz, and Bernstein, the noted boxing analyst for Showtime.

“This Hall of Fame is essentially for the great boxers you see on this stage,” Bernstein said. “It is built for them. It is their house. This Hall of Fame is very generous in the way it welcomes those of us who filled another function for boxing. I take this as a supreme honor that I’m allowed to be a part of this place that is so special.”


• CHINA’S SHANSHAN FENG WINS LPGA CHAMPIONSHIP: PITTSFORD, N.Y. (AP) — Shanshan Feng set two personal goals this year on the LPGA Tour. She reached them both with one memorable round.

Feng won the LPGA Championship on Sunday to become the first Chinese player to win an LPGA Tour title and a major event, closing with a 5-under 67 for a two-stroke victory.

“I am so excited right now,” Feng said. “I did it! I don’t know how to celebrate. It happened too soon. I’m going to miss my flight tomorrow. I might just go home. Who knows? I want to see my parents. I’m sure they want to see me.”

More than likely.

The 22-year-old Feng, the only player from China on the tour, had the lowest round of the tournament at the right time and finished at 6-under 282.