Armstrong Back In Silver City

Silver City – Lance is back with his bike in New Mexico.

Seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong has returned to Silver City to compete this week in the Tour of the Gila stage race.

The event begins Wednesday with a 95-mile ride from Silver City to Mogollon.

Armstrong is riding in the Tour of the Gila for the second straight year with teammate Levi Leipheimer. They are joined by a third member of Team RadioShack, Jason McCartney.

Last year, Armstrong took part as he came back from a broken collarbone. This time, he decided to return because he felt the level of competition was strong and the timing worked well with his training regimen in recent weeks in Colorado.

Armstrong also says he enjoyed the varied terrain of southwestern New Mexico, which features 339 miles and more than 25,000 feet of climbing.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.