Yesterday's toughest Alpine mountain stage brutally exposed the fragility of many of the favourites for overall victory. Three days racing in the Juras and the Alps have left Andy Schleck and Alberto Contador as the only real contenders, as things stand, to win the 2010 Tour de France. Although Schleck has perhaps looked strongest in the mountains and Contador has yet to try an attack, the advantage for the moment remains with Alberto as hitherto Andy is not great at time trials. The penultimate stage is a 51 km individual time trial from Bordeaux to Pauillac and Contador should easily be able to take 41 seconds and more out of Schleck here. The Pyrenees will be decisive but something might happen on the lumpy 16th stage (this Friday) from Bourg-de-Péage to Mende. Incidentally this stage passes by Le Gerbier de Jonc, the source of La Loire.
Today is a less difficult Alpine stage to Gap. Overall there may be a truce between the two As with the possibility of a breakaway group succeeding.