Each-way value away from Tour de France favourite Wiggins

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Afforded clear 5/4 favouritism, there is no doubting that Ladbrokes feel Bradley Wiggins is ready to make history, and become the first ever British Tour de France winner.

Wiggins himself appears confident heading into the gruelling endurance test, feeling he is ready to add to his Paris-Nice, Tour de Romandie and Criterium du Dauphine triumphs of this year.

He told the Guardian: “I really feel this could be my year. It’s simply the way I’ve felt all season, and that’s how it was in 2008.

“There have been no upsets, no setbacks, just one phase after another. Now we are finally there. I’ve got my businesslike head on. I feel relaxed and businesslike.”

Few could argue that Wiggins enters the race in the finest form of his career, with the only worries prevailing being that he has perhaps peaked too soon.

His main competitor is thought to be defending champion Cadel Evans, who is a 9/4 shot to retain the yellow jersey, but after him, much value could potentially be found in backing other entrants to place.

A top-three finish would mean a payout for each-way punters, and several seem to have chances at huge prices.

Indeed, the closest to Evans’ 9/4 price is 18/1 Russian Denis Menchov, who has finished in the top five at the Tour de France on three occasions.

He most recently placed in 2010 when finishing second, and is a tempting prospect to do so again, after triumphing at this year’s Russian National Time Trial Championships.

Frank Schleck could also be a worth a punt, with the Luxembourg native 33/1 to repeat his exploits of last year, when he achieved a career-best third place finish in the race.

Schleck has finished in the top ten in four of his six efforts in the race, and is always likely to be there or thereabouts.

At a monster price meanwhile, Italian Ivan Basso could see smatterings of support at 150/1.

Basso came home in seventh place last year, his fourth top-ten finish in cycling’s showpiece event, but he has finished in the top three on two occasions too, and looks worth a bet to do so again at such a huge price.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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