The bookmakers don?t waste much time when it comes to offering people the chance to lighten their wallets – but within an hour of the Tour de France route being announced, gambling website Unibet.com had already made Alberto Contador the favourite, ahead of Cadel Evans.

A no-brainer perhaps given they were the first two in the 2007 race.

And, with the rules of participation not yet confirmed by ASO – and the possibility that one or two may be caught with their hands in the naughty jar before July – it would take a brave punter to risk their cash today.

A bet on Michael Rasmussen at 17s looks about as wise as taking out a tenner and cutting it into thin strips.

OPENING ODDS
Alberto Contador 4.00
Cadel Evans 6.00
Andreas Kloden 9.00
Denis Menchov 11.00
Levi Leipheimer 12.00
Alejandro Valverde 15.00
Michael Rasmussen 17.00
Carlos Sastre 20.00
Michael Rogers 20.00
Andy Schleck 20.00
Full odds on unibet.com

RELATED LINKS
Tour 008: The instant reaction
Tour 2008: Stage list and map