Given the strength of his team and his own individual talent, there can be no excuses for Hincapie not holding off his rivals all the way to the finish of the Tour in Ans.
Gerolsteiner's Stefan Schumacher remains the biggest threat, and a stage win in a sprint would see him move ahead of the 35 year-old American, though with Quickstep seemingly unstoppable over the final few kilometres, an early attack may be required.
Liquigas' Vincenzo Nibali has been one of the surprise packages of the tour so far, and the Ardennes hills will provide him with an opportunity to showcase his climbing abilities.
Giro d'Italia
Cummings and Roche ready to roar
11/05/2007 AT 19:02
Overall victory may be beyond him this year, as his every move will be closely monitored by Discovery Channel, though his stock has risen considerably throughout the course of the last week.
In terms of the stage victory, Tom Boonen appears once again to hold all the aces. He may decide to act as a lead-out man for Wouter Weylandt or Steven de Jongh, though that tactic failed on stage 3, when de Jongh was unable to remain in his leader's wheel.
Should they attempt it again, Simone Cadamuro would be well advised to wait a little longer than on Monday before launching his final push for the line, as he could benefit from any potential confusion.
If Boonen wants the victory though, it's his for the taking.
Pro Tour 2007
Basso denies taking drugs
08/05/2007 AT 11:52
Pro Tour 2007
Basso had crisis of conscience
07/05/2007 AT 17:39