The Tour de France classification will be re-shaped in today's stage to Morzine-Avoriaz, according to seven-time winner Lance Armstrong.
"The key is La Ramaz, which is the climb before Morzine. It is very difficult, there are patches with eight, nine, 10 per cent," explained Armstrong. "There will be selection, it won't be like today [Saturday - Ed.]"
Yesterday, Armstrong finished in a group with Sky's Bradley Wiggins and the other overall favourites behind race winner Sylvain Chavanel. Frenchman Chavanel took the leader's yellow jersey and leads the race by 1'25" over Cadel Evans (BMC Racing) and 1'55" over Andy Schleck (Saxo Bank).
Luxembourg's Schleck is the highest place classification rider with Evans, while Armstrong sits 1'21" behind Schleck. Therefore, Schleck's Saxo Bank team manager, Bjarne Riis, plans a defensive race.
"I see no reason to ride [on the offensive]," said Riis. "The Tour de France is still long and we are in a good position with Andy, which is the most important [aspect] right now."
Today's 189-kilometre stage to Morzine-Avoriaz is the first of six high-mountain stages in this year's Tour de France.
The stage features two category four climbs in the first half, but the meat of the stage is in the rears: La Ramaz, Les Gets and Avoriaz. Both La Ramaz and Avoriaz are over 1600 metres in altitude and 13 kilometres in length.
Tour de France 2010: Latest news
Sky's objective clear ahead of Tour's high mountains
The Feed Zone (July 10): Tour de France news and views
Thomas: 'Yellow jersey would be unbelievable
Analysis: The role of Renshaw
Cavendish strikes back in Tour de France
Thomas happy with Tour's white jersey; but says 'All for Brad'
Wiggins crashes on Tour stage start
Cavendish and Farrar return to top
Cavendish keeps up fight for first Tour win
Sky delivers Boasson Hagen to third without pressure
Tour de France 2010: Stage reports
Stage seven: Chavanel wins stage and takes overall as Thomas drops out of Tour's white
Stage six: Cavendish makes it two as Tour hots up
Stage five: Cavendish wins his first stage of Tour
Stage four: Petacchi wins into Reims
Stage three: Hushovd takes dramatic win; Thomas second on stage and GC
Stage three live coverage: As it happened
Stage two: Comeback man Chavanel takes victory in Spa
Stage one: Petacchi wins in Brussels as bunch left in tatters
Prologue: Cancellara pips Martin to win
Tour de France 2010: Photos
Stage seven photo gallery
Stage six photo gallery
Stage five photo gallery
Stage four photo gallery
Stage three photo gallery
Stage two photo gallery
Stage one gallery
Prologue photo gallery
Tour de France 2010: Videos
Stage seven video highlights
Stage six video highlights
Stage five video highlights
Stage four video highlights
Stage three video highlights
Stage two video highlights
Stage one video highlights
Prologue video highlights
Tour de France 2010: Race guide
Tour de France 2010: Cycling Weekly's coverage index
Official start list, with race numbers
Brits at the Tour 2010
Tout team guide
Tour jerseys: What they are and what they mean
Brits in the Tours: From Robinson to Wiggins
Tour de France 2010: Pictures
Tour team presentation, Rotterdam
Tour teams take to the cobbles: Photo special
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