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Fans continue to taunt Chris Froome at Tour de France over doping controversy

Spectators continue to taunt Chris Froome along the roads of the Tour de France after the four-time champion was cleared of doping.

British cyclist facing scrutiny despite being cleared prior to race

A man, centre, expresses his disapproval of Britain's Chris Froome, left, by booing prior to the start of the fifteenth stage of the Tour de France cycling race in Carcassonne, France on Sunday. Froome was cleared of doping by the International Cycling Union in a decision that will allow him to pursue a record-tying fifth title. (Christophe Ena/Associated Press)

Spectators continue to taunt Chris Froome along the roads of the Tour de France after the four-time champion was cleared of doping.

Prior to the start of Stage 15 on Sunday in the southern town of Millau, one spectator leaned over the barriers toward Froome and made a gesture like he was injecting his arm.

Throughout the race, spectators have voiced their disapproval of the Team Sky rider.

A cloud had hung over Froome after a urine sample taken during the Spanish Vuelta in September showed a concentration of the asthma drug salbutamol that was twice the permitted level.

Tour organizers had informed Froome that he wasn't welcome at this year's race until the International Cycling Union announced five days before the event started that Froome's result did not represent an adverse finding.

Froome is aiming to join Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain as the only riders to win the Tour five times.

Nielsen takes charge

Magnus Cort Nielsen of Denmark sprinted away from two other challengers to win Stage 15 of the Tour de France on Sunday.

The Astana rider claimed his first career win at the Tour after staying ahead of Ion Izagirre and Bauke Mollema in a sprint over the final 200 metres of the hilly 181.5-kilometre (112.7-mile) leg from Millau that finished in a long descent to Carcassonne.

The three riders were the last of a breakaway group of 29 cyclists.

Geraint Thomas in the yellow jersey, second-placed Froome, and the rest of the overall contenders were in a pack more than 10 minutes behind and had not finished yet.

The race will have a rest day on Monday. That pause precedes the four days in the Pyrenees, followed by the individual time trial on the penultimate day of the race.

The racing returns on Tuesday with Stage 16, a 218-kilometre mountain trek from Carcassonne to Bagneres-de-Luchon.

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