Could it be that that potential infighting within Team Astana is going to force their stars (particularly Contador and Armstrong) to peak too early and have nothing left for the third week, especially the Stage 18 TT and the Stage 20 climb up Ventoux ?
It has been made fairly clear that they need to assert their position as the strongest within their team early to gain leadership status. The obvious place for that to happen is Stage 1, maybe stage 7; that is, in the first week. Could too much of a focus on this "race" leave the winner struggling on Venoux in the third week?
The history of three week grand tours is littered with stars that burn bright in the first week or so only to fade to the background come the final week.
This could really play into the hands of the likes of Menchov, Evans, Sastre etc. Indeed I could see someone like Menchov or Sastre willing to take a back seat on the final climb of Stage 7 and watch Contador and Armstrong "sort themselves out"...
Ooohh this is going to be fun to watch.