Mike Tomalaris has gathered together a small echelon of cycling journalists to spin the Tour roulette and see just who comes out as yellow jersey favourite for the 2008 Tour de France.
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7 Apr 2015 - 11:32 PM  UPDATED 13 Apr 2015 - 3:36 PM

The Tour de France is here, so now is the time to be bold enough and tip the winners of the world's biggest bike race.

I've also asked some of my cycling journo colleagues to give their selections.

It seems Cadel Evans is the man to beat in 2008.

The Aussie is on the brink of creating a slice of Tour history.

But who are the challengers?

Personally, I can't see an Italian figuring in the top 5 as they tend to concentrate on doing well at the Giro - the national tour of Italy.

Marco Pantani was the last Italian winner in 1998, but let's face it he was a freak of nature.

I've got a feeling Russian riders will rise to the ocassion as will the powerfully balanced combination of CSC.

But you can't go past Cadel - can you? Or can you?

His entire year has revolved around this Tour.

His preparation has been meticulous. He's even taken the extreme measures of employing a personal bodyguard and a chef.

He has studied the course and ridden many parts of it since it was announced last October - ever hill, corner, turn and climb.

At the Dauphine Libere (this month's TdF warm-up) Cadel attacked his rivals - something he's been accused of failing to do on a regular basis in past Tours.

The only thing stopping him is an unforseen disaster.

Let's hope that doesn't happen.

That said - here are the tips for 2008.

MIKE TOMALARIS - RBCC
OVERALL
1. Alejandro Valverde
2. Cadel Evans
3. Denis Menchov
4. Frank Schleck
5. Stijn Devolder
GREEN JERSEY
Baden Cooke
KOM
Stijn Devolder

RUPERT GUINNESS - SYDNEY MORNING HERALD
OVERALL
1. Cadel Evans
2. Alejandro Valverde
3. Carlos Sastre
4. Kim Kirchen
5. Damiano Cunego
GREEN JERSEY
Mark Cavendish
KOM
Frank Schleck

ROB ARNOLD - RIDE CYCLING REVIEW
OVERALL
1. Cadel Evans
2. Denis Menchov
3. Andy Schleck
4. Carlos Sastre
5. Alejandro Valverde
GREEN JERSEY
Thor Hushovd
KOM
Andy Schleck

JOHN FLYNN - SBS
OVERALL
1. Cadel Evans
2. Alejandro Valverde
3. Andy Schleck
4. Denis Menchov
5. Damiano Cunego
GREEN JERSEY
Mark Cavendish
KOM
Carlos Sastre