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Many recipes for French Fries (as well as other potato recipes) recommend soaking the potatoes in cold water for thirty minutes. The rationale is that some of the starch is leached away and helps the texture of the potato, but this simply doesn't make any sense. The starch on the outside edges of the cut potatoes may wash away, but significant starch or nutrients are not likely to be changed. There may be some slight change in the moisture content of the potato, however.
It is more likely that the inside of the chilled potato takes longer to cook. Consequently, the outside will be crispy and the inside soft and moist. This recipe was tested both ways (with and without soaking the cut potatoes in ice water) and the soaked potatoes were lighter and fluffier on the inside and crispier on the outside.