Dutch champion Michael Boogerd was in a determined mood before the start in Gap. "Today will be really hard," he told Cyclingnews. "We will try to do our best and see where we finish up. It is true that I have really good form and I hope that I am in the same shape as in the Pyrenees.
"I hope that I can be up front today but it will be very difficult. There will be a lot of Dutch spectators today so if I am not on top, it won't have been for the lack of support, but because I was lacking something in my legs. We will see."