Contador gives thumbs up to Giro route, indicates he could take part in 2013
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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Contador gives thumbs up to Giro route, indicates he could take part in 2013

by VeloNation Press at 7:54 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia
Spaniard says he’s very pleased with recent performances; set for a break now

Alberto ContadorAlthough his last attempt to target the Giro-Tour double left him fatigued for the latter race, Alberto Contador today indicated that he could yet return to the Italian event in 2013.

“It's a route that can suit me pretty well, but I still don’t know the program,” he said. “In a few weeks we will begin to study the program for the next season. I'll wait for the presentation of the other Grand Tours to know their routes and will decide based on that.”

Contador was one of the big riders invited to today’s presentation, a year and a half after his now-annulled triumph in the 2011 edition. In that context it’s hard to gauge his comment about potentially riding the Giro again next year. His big motivation is logically to return to the sport’s biggest race and take the Tour again; the 2010 edition is one he won, then later lost due to his Clenbuterol positive, and wearing yellow in Paris again is likely a major target for him and the team.

Still, he appeared enthusiastic about the Giro route and didn’t rule anything out. Time will tell if that was diplomacy or intent. “It is a Giro with a balanced parcours, with the novelty of a flat time trial of 55 kilometres that they haven’t had for a long time,” he said after looking at the route.

“Again, the Giro is characterized by hardness in the last week, with several uphill and very demanding finishes. There will be a team time trial and a 20-kilometer climbing TT that will create a lot of difference.”

Self-assessment positive for return to racing:

Back in action early in August, Contador has clocked up three wins in all; a stage plus the overall in the Vuelta, plus victory in Wednesday’s Milano-Torino. He followed the latter up with ninth in Il Lombardia, coming home in the chasing group behind Joaquim Rodriguez.

“These races have given me a lot of confidence,” he said of his post-Vuelta programme. “I made a great World Championships, but the route didn’t give me many options. Then I got the win in Milano-Torino, the first one-day race I won. In the Tour of Lombardy also I had good feeling, going over the top of the last climb with Henao a few seconds behind Joaquim [Rodriguez]. Then a group caught us from behind, but I felt pretty well.”

Overall, he’s more than satisfied with his return. “I'm very, very happy. I debuted in the Eneco Tour, a race that can be called 'anti Alberto', completely flat,” he said. “But I finished fourth and am very happy.

“In the Vuelta I got the result for which I had fought, in a beautiful race not seen in many years, and that has to be good for everyone. And then, the Worlds were normal, but I had good sensations and could be a protagonist. Finally, I cannot ask for more after this week in Italy and after having spent so many months without competing.”

Contador said that he was fatigued after a year that was physically and mentally tough, and that he planned to take a good holiday now.

“From tomorrow it’s time to rest and to disconnect a little from the bike, because I need to rest the body and the head,” he explained. “Until the next team training camp, which will be in mid-November in Gran Canaria, I will not touch the bike.”

Such a break seems very long but Contador has done so in the past and appears able to handle a long period of time away in the off season. He’ll presumably be doing other sports to stay fit in the meantime, then will return in five or six weeks ready to knuckle down.


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