Teams prepare for the Tour de France

With the Tour de France just two days away, the peloton has descended on the Dutch city of Utrecht for opening time trial on Saturday.

Many arrived on Wednesday and took the chance to ride the cobbles that lie ahead of them on stage 4. Defending champion Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) took to the pavé, as did his rival, Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo). Many other participating teams and riders were captured while they were out for training sessions, including Team Sky and LottoNL-Jumbo.

The media have also arrived en-masse, with press conferences being held throughout Thursday and Friday.

Flick through the gallery above for pictures from the build-up to the Tour de France, and keep on clicking back as we add more photos.

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