Spain’s Alberto Contador told journalists on Monday that he would not be taking part in this season’s Vuelta a España following his second Giro d’Italia triumph on Sunday.
The Tinkoff-Saxo rider, who is bidding to become the first man since Marco Pantani in 1998 to win the Italian classic and the Tour de France in the same year, knows competition will be fierce.
Alberto Contador: ‘‘This year will be very demanding, I have barely a month between the Giro and the Tour. It’s the challenge I have set myself so I am going to concentrate on the Tour and, unless I have an accident or something goes wrong in France, I will not be taking part in this year’s Vuelta.’‘
Contador’s victory on Sunday enhanced his status as one of the greatest riders. The 32-year-old, who won the three-week race for the first time in 2008, became the second rider after Frenchman Bernard Hinault to have won the three grand tours at least twice.