Spanish rider Alejandro Valverde leads midway through the Dauphine Libre this week. The Dauphine is widely considered to be the final tuneup for serious Tour De France contenders. A solid finish this week is a good predictor of your finish at the Tour. Valverde finished in 6th place at last years Tour De France.
In 2nd and 3rd place sit American Levi Leipheimer (3rd at the 07 TDF) and Australian Cadel Evans (2nd at last years TDF).
Last years Dauphine winner, frenchman Christophe Moreau, ended up 37th overall at the 07 Tour De France after a complete meltdown on stage 13. The 2007 Tour De France winner Alberto Contador finished 6th at the 2007 Dauphine.
Other top TDF contenders current Dauphine position: 06 TDF winner Oscar Pereiro 7th (10th in 07 TDF), Haimar Zubeldia is 14th (5th in 07 TDF), Carlos Sastre is 23rd (4th in 07 TDF).
After 5 stages Valverde still leads. Evans has moved ahead of Leipheimer who now sit 2nd and 3rd. Zubeldia has moved up to 9th. 2 stages to go.