Tour de France Prelude and Predictions
English philosopher Thomas Hobbes described human life in a state of nature as "nasty, cruel, brutish, and short."
His time trailing is weak. He will ride just as he has always ridden, consistently but not brilliantly, well enough for eighth place.
Andreas Kl?den (T-Mobile) is a well-rounded rider who is good enough for ninth place. He is capable of placing higher, but he will be chained to team captain Jan Ullrich. Expect Kl?den to climb well in a support role and to ride good time trials.
Levi Leipheimer (Gerolsteiner) is a good all rounder. The American, however, has two problems. The first is a weak team. The second is an inability to stay with the best on the toughest climbs. Leipheimer can handle the Category 1 ascents, but he will be dropped on the Hors Categorie climbs. The latter climbs, however, are where the Tour will be decided. Put Leipheimer down for tenth place.
In other competitions, Robbie McEwen will win his third green jersey, Santiago Botero will be the King of the Mountains, CSC will take the team competition, and Vladimir Karpets will win his second white jersey. From the start in Fromentine to the finish on the