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Last minute preparations for Tour de France contenders

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Fränk Schleck is the Luxembourg road champion this year.

Fränk Schleck is the Luxembourg road champion this year.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Amateur cyclists were given a chance to shine in Rotterdam.

Amateur cyclists were given a chance to shine in Rotterdam.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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The Astana boys head out into the Dutch countryside

The Astana boys head out into the Dutch countryside
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Alexandre Vinokourov and Alberto Contador

Alexandre Vinokourov and Alberto Contador
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Jesús Hernández (Astana)

Jesús Hernández (Astana)
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Contador will be debuting a new time trial bike on Saturday.

Contador will be debuting a new time trial bike on Saturday.
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Benjamin Noval and Dani Navarro enjoy their ride in the sunshine outside Rotterdam.

Benjamin Noval and Dani Navarro enjoy their ride in the sunshine outside Rotterdam.
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Max Iglinsky (Astana)

Max Iglinsky (Astana)
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Contador with his Audi Allroad 2700 TDI personalized for the Tour.

Contador with his Audi Allroad 2700 TDI personalized for the Tour.
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Alberto Contador is interviewed on Thursday.

Alberto Contador is interviewed on Thursday.
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Contador and Vinokourov had some company for their ride.

Contador and Vinokourov had some company for their ride.
(Image credit: Alberto Contador)
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Fränk helps his brother Andy Schleck with his helmet.

Fränk helps his brother Andy Schleck with his helmet.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Alexander Vinokourov (Astana)

Alexander Vinokourov (Astana)
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Alberto Contador (Astana), the defending Tour champion.

Alberto Contador (Astana), the defending Tour champion.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Alberto Contador gets ready for a 3 hour spin on the outskirts of Rotterdam.

Alberto Contador gets ready for a 3 hour spin on the outskirts of Rotterdam.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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The Astana team rides in the morning ahead of the team presentations

The Astana team rides in the morning ahead of the team presentations
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Lance Armstrong (Radioshack)

Lance Armstrong (Radioshack)
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Some commuters got a nice surprise when all of Radioshack, including Lance Armstrong, came past.

Some commuters got a nice surprise when all of Radioshack, including Lance Armstrong, came past.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Lance Armstrong (Radioshack) enjoying his ride in Rotterdam.

Lance Armstrong (Radioshack) enjoying his ride in Rotterdam.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)

The clock is counting down to the start of the Tour de France, and all of Rotterdam is ready for the sport's biggest event. The sun was shining on the riders as they took to the streets of the host town of the Grand Départ.

In the morning ahead of the team presentations and pre-race press conferences, the Schleck brothers took some time to try out their new time trial gear which will be used for the 8km prologue on Saturday.

Radioshack also went out for a spin, with Lance Armstrong drawing plenty of attention as he pedaled along the bike path alongside commuters on their much more utilitarian townies.

Defending champion Alberto Contador looked relaxed and ready to try for his third Tour title, and was accompanied by his entire Astana team for the ride where he also tried out some new time trial equipment that will be debuted on Saturday.

Enjoy the photo gallery from AFP and Contador's press agency, and look for more photos of the team presentation later today.