and teammate Andreas Klöden in an alpine stage.
Armstrong is now the lead rider of Team RadioShack, drawn largely from last year’s Astana squad. Contador has no holdover teammates from last year, with many former teammates now riding in support of Armstrong.
Contador’s main lieutenant will be Alexandre Vinokourov, who is coming back to the Tour de France after serving a two-year suspension for doping. Vinokourov, a former podium finisher, is a bit of a wild card at the Tour. Astana was created to feature Vinokourov, until his suspension derailed those plans.
“My relationship with Alexandre Vinokourov is excellent,” Contador said Friday. “We fully trust reach other.
“Nothing that happened last year can happen with Vino. It is extremely important to have a united team, especially off the road, because we are going to spend a month together away from home.”
While attending the teams presentation on Thursday, Armstrong asked the gathered fans why it was so hot, after temperatures soared into the 90s. That was 15 to 20 degrees above average.
Temperatures are expected to drop 10 to 15 degrees by today, when the Tour opens with the prologue. There also will be a decent chance of rain.
The prologue will be staged on wide, flat roads, so if the rains hold off, expect fast times.