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Tour de France

Smart money on Contador

It’s almost July and you know what that means – it’s time to bet on the Tour de France. Bookies across Europe ? where betting on the Tour and other cycling events is quite popular ? have anointed their favorite. Alberto Contador leads the odds across all the major European betting houses, outstripping seven-time Tour champ Lance Armstrong and defending champion Carlos Sastre. In fact, Contador is so heavily favored by the bookies, that it would be hard to make much money on the Spanish climber.

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By Andrew Hood

Bookies tend to look past fan loyalty and nationalism. Most say Contador is a sure bet to win the Tour.

Bookies tend to look past fan loyalty and nationalism. Most say Contador is a sure bet to win the Tour.

Photo: Graham Watson

It’s almost July and you know what that means – it’s time to bet on the Tour de France.

Bookies across Europe ? where betting on the Tour and other cycling events is quite popular ? have anointed their favorite.

Alberto Contador leads the odds across all the major European betting houses, outstripping seven-time Tour champ Lance Armstrong and defending champion Carlos Sastre.

In fact, Contador is so heavily favored by the bookies, that it would be hard to make much money on the Spanish climber.

Of the more than a dozen online betting outfits scanned by VeloNews, most have him on one-to-one odds, meaning that you could still double your money, but don’t you want to take something of a bigger risk?

More money could be made on Armstrong, who will be trying to bring home his eighth Tour crown after sitting on the sidelines for nearly four years in retirement. Odds range from 4-to-1, 7-to-2 and 33-to-5.

Andy Schleck, Cadel Evans and Denis Menchov rank in the top 5, ranging from 7- to 15-to-1 odds, respectively. There’s not much faith among the odds-makers that Sastre will repeat, with his odds ranging from 16- to 20-to-1.

Some real jing could be made on Christian Vande Velde, who nets 100-to-1 odds on one popular betting site.

Want to take a flier? How about Vladimir Karpets at 300-to-1, or Igor Antón at 500-to-1? That might be worth putting down a few euros on.