I've enjoyed it so far (as I always do) and I'm enjoying not seeing Lance in there. It's been a decent free for all race without the normal bossiness and beligerant angst thats prevailed in previous versions. So for that alone it's refreshing.
So stage wins, the only one I was slightly dissapointed with (can I say that all things consided?) was the Huschoft win breaking Roy and Moncutie, I so wanted a Frenchie to win that one, Roy would have been hailed a hero and if David hadda taken it he too would have been even more reviered.. as is they've proven the French have bolstered thier game, satisfied many naysayers (here and in France) in the French Cycling is back to where it should be..
Tommy V has always been a punchy Rouleur, a guy thats always had a break in his heart, someone whose lived for the realisation of a FRench stage win, to see him in Yellow for this long is inspirational, I would love to see him win GC, would so love that.
As for the "big" players, the only on I can see now with a hope of winning GC is Cadel. Sucha solid TT from him would take tenacity and I think he has it in him to do that. But in my heart of hearts I'm saying it's going to be an Andy/Frank 1-2 with Cadel in 3rd. Vockler in 4th and all down to the TT. Andy and Frank will make up the time lost so far up in the Alp's, Tommy will not be able to attack thereby leaving him open to loosing a couple of mins on the Galibier of all places. If, if, Tommy can just stay with them then he has a realistic chance of a podium.
As fro Basso and Bertie, even Cunego well I'm of the thought that Basso's the only one with the ability to catch up, he's an amazing rider when he's on form, I so hope he's able to climb well within the Andy/Frank show for they both will fight to break the others in contention. I don't think either of them would care if the other won, just so long as it's one of them and for that reason I'm pegging them for overall.
As for the other riders, well you can't deny Gilberts got soul, certainly the breaks and sprints, the digs he's had have all shown he's getting used to mass group rideouts and the effort required to win the TdF.
Best team and supprising one so far are OmegaPhLotto, I mean for a bunch of Classics boys.. quite stunning the output they have given. I've been majorly impressed by FdJ too though everso slightly dissapointed by Cassar, ok I know he's been around a bit but the star have been Roy for sure, I just hope FdJ can keen him from going anywhere else.
Always been a huge fan of Cofidis, Moncutie being my unsung hero, and it's been great to see them up there, though part of me wants them to get on with it a bit.
Sammys win the other day was amazing and it's a shame his 2nd in the Pyranees wans't a win, but hey, hero..
So overall, certainly the most entertaining Tour of recent years, closest too in the "no pre ordained winner from the off" format we've had in the past. Glad Berties having a hard time (I'm a fan by the way) not so glad Vino went out though, shame that as he'd've been a real sight to see in the mountains killing it.
Off to the Alps tomorrow to watch them all, can't wait.