With the main contenders relaxing tired muscles after two days in the Alps, Belgian champion Ludo Dierckxsens won the 11th stage of the Tour de France yesterday.

The overall standings remained virtually unchanged, with American Lance Armstrong retaining his comfortable lead at 7 minutes 47 seconds.

"If Armstrong doesn't crack, the rest of us will simply be playing for podium places in Paris," said Richard Virenque of France, who finished sixth in Wednesday's 10th stage in the Alps.

Armstrong, the 27-year-old Texan making a remarkable recovery from testicular cancer, acknowledged he is in good shape.

"After two stages in the mountains, I've got to be happy," Armstrong said. "I'm in a good position. After yesterday I was tired, so I just tried to control my competitors."


Larson Wins TwoAnnapolis sailor Chris Larson celebrated his 33rd birthday by winning both races as skipper of the Mumm 36 Ciao Baby in the Champagne Mumm Admirals Cup off Cowes in England. Larson's two victories put the United States in second place halfway through the eight-race series, 5 1/2 points behind the British team. Eight nations sent three-boat teams to the prestigious biennial event, which the United States won in 1997.

Ciao Baby led at every mark of both races. The other U.S. boats did not fare as well. Idler, with Ken Read at the helm, finished second and fifth, and Blue Yankee under Steve Benjamin finished third and sixth.


Beukeboom Retires

New York Rangers defenseman Jeff Beukeboom said he will be unable to resume his NHL career because of a series of concussions last season. Beukeboom, 34, originally was injured Nov. 19 at Los Angeles when he was hit by Matt Johnson. He was hurt again in December, and his season ended with another concussion Feb. 12 against Carolina. . . .

John Cullen will be retained as an assistant coach with the Tampa Bay Lightning for next season, but Rick Paterson and Paulin Bordeleau will be assigned to other positions in the organization. . . . The Dallas Stars acquired defenseman Jamie Pushor from the Atlanta Thrashers for left wing Jason Botterill. In another deal, the Thrashers acquired right wing Martin Prochazka from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick in the 2001 NHL entry draft. The Maple Leafs signed free agent center Jason Bonsignore and prospect Vladimir Antipov. . . . The Edmonton Oilers named former player Craig MacTavish an assistant coach.


Kerrigan Files Suit

Figure skater Nancy Kerrigan filed a lawsuit against a company she says is using her name to sell sexually explicit pictures over the Internet. In a suit filed in Essex Superior Court in Boston, Kerrigan accuses FSX Network Communications Corp., of Staten Island, N.Y., of inserting her name 32 times into a 22-line text page in an effort to get search engines to point to the site whenever a computer user requests information on Kerrigan. The text page links to three pages where sexually explicit pictures are for sale.

Auto Racing

Fender Debate

As the Indy Racing League returns to another high-banked track, Atlanta Motor Speedway, there is serious debate about adding fenders to the cars for the 2000 season.

Bruton Smith, who owns four tracks where the IRL stages five of its 11 races, is pushing the idea mainly as a way of improving safety--a primary concern since flying debris killed three fans and injured eight during the May 1 race near Charlotte. Smith owns the North Carolina track and the similarly designed 1.54-mile oval south of Atlanta, where the Kobalt Mechanics Tools 500 will be held Saturday night.

High Schools

Foglio Gets Continuance

Former Centreville football coach Dan Foglio was granted a continuance at Fairfax County General District Court on a misdemeanor charge of concealing merchandise. Foglio, 47, is scheduled to return to the court Aug. 24 to face charges he shoplifted less than $100 worth of clothing from the J.C. Penney department store at Fair Oaks Mall in Fairfax. Foglio resigned from his coaching position July 7 but maintains the situation was merely a "misunderstanding."


Flyers Voice Dies

Gene Hart, who broadcast Philadelphia hockey games over radio and television for 28 years, died at 68 at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Camden, N.J. He was admitted to the critical-care unit after he became severely dehydrated and developed an infection following chemotherapy to treat a tumor.

CAPTION: A determined Ludo Dierckxsens of Belgium pedals toward victory during 11th stage of Tour de France.