I've done this event a few times now and I think it's a great event. Matt was really unlucky with the weather so he didn't get to ride the prologue. It's good fun - 15km of mainly downhill.
I remember the first time I did it in 2007, it was baking, and the final feed station looked more like a battlefield with people cramping, doubled over, all over the place. I think you do have to make changes to your bike which are specific to the race though - 200m rotors, huge rear tyre for uphill grip. I was on 22/36 so able to ride a fair amount of the uphills.
Thing is, looks like the weather in Europe at this time of year in the south looks quite unstable, when it's typically been very good.
If you're looking for something different, have a look at the Raid Terres Noires. It's another event that's 70km and virtually 90% singletrack. You get to ride over these ridiculous arretes where one mistake sends you to the bottom!
The singletrack's much more rolling but I found it harder than the TV for some reason.