www.albertocontadornotebook.info - Alberto Contador Fans Notebook


April 18 - Alberto Contador wins Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010

Stage 5, April 18: Samos (Lugo)—Santiago de Compostela, 176 km

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010

The victory journey is complete in Santiago de Compostela (Photo by Kahane)

Alberto Contador safely completed Stage 5 of the Vuelta Ciclista Castilla y León in Santiago de Compostela today, the last hurdle before mounting the podium to receive the overall title. By adding today's GC win to the two triumphs already in his palmarés (2007, 2008), Contador becomes the first rider ever to win three editions of the race across Spain's largest province.

This year's edition of Castilla y León was a pilgrimage of 14 cycling teams along El Camino de Santiago, the traditional footpath to the tomb of St. James at Santiago de Compostela. El Camino, or the St. James Way, has long been a road to walk with discipline and sacrifice. The suffering of the journey makes the pilgrim's joy in reaching the shrine a profound and blissful reward.

As a special observance, El Camino became the cyclists' route as well this year, since 2010 is a jubilee year for St. James, a year when the saint's feast day is celebrated on Sunday and therefore considered more deeply holy.

For Alberto Contador, El Camino led to jubilee. It returned to him the territory he had owned in 2007 and 2008, the podium, the property that he gave willingly to ex-teammate Levi Leipheimer last year. Today’s podium celebration also brought him a jubilant reward for the suffering of his profession: inclement weather, dangerous roads, incessant training, polemics, allergies.

Contador has triumphed in three of his four races so far in 2010 - in fact, it would seem that this year the number 3 is Contador's magic number. His triumphs translate into six victories to date: the overall plus one stage in the Algarve, in Paris-Nice, and now in Castilla y León.

His arrival in Santiago has been a celebration of Three for the Triple Crown winner. Perhaps it heralds an even more profound and blissful Three.

Three more races—La Flèche Wallonne, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, and the Dauphiné Libéré—separate him from the beginning of his true pilgrimage for 2010: a three-week quest in July for his third title in the Tour de France. (Alberto Contador Notebook)

COMMENTS: Speaking after putting on his third burgundy maillot in Santiago de Compostela, Alberto said that his “evaluation of the first third of the season is excellent.”

“I’ve gotten results since the first race. I’ve done very well in the mountains as well as in the time trials. I’ve always been riding to win and I’ve gotten a few victories already that give me peace of mind for the rest of the year, and things are going very well for the team,” he said.

About the race through Castile and León, Contador said: “My evaluation of the tour is excellent. The team has worked very well, has worked perfectly, and as for me, my legs have responded. I’m feeling good.”

“We needed to survive the day, a hard one due to the steep terrain and due to an eight-man escape that was going very fast, but we were able to control it,” he added.

The Pinto native said in addition, “Each time I’m more convinced of how beneficial it was to change my schedule. I don’t much like the topic of records, but I’m happy because it means that I’ve won a race that I’m especially fond of. I also noticed that warmth in the people and it’s a shame not to be able to give them the attention they deserve.” (Official press release, AC press room)

RESULTS: Contador in Stage 5, 21st (s.t. Sergio Ribeira) Contador in the GC, WINNER (total time 16:56:01). Contador also won the combinada classification and the trophy for Best Spaniard.

GC TOP TEN: 1 Contador, 2 Antón (0:41), 3 Mosquera (1:20), 4 Brajkovic (1:30), 5 Bernabeu (2:30), 6 Moreno (2:51), 7 Machado (2:51), 8 Denifl (2:58), 9 Menchov (3:06), 10 Rubiera (3:17)

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010

Alberto shoots with one hand, hold the trophy for Best Spaniard in the other
(Photo by Kahane)


PLAYBOOK: Information coming from the stage today was sparse, possibly due to two preoccupations in the cycling world. One is the Dutch classic Amstel Gold Race, also happening today. The other is the massive cloud of ash being spewed into the skies by a volcano in Iceland, which has disrupted air travel and threatens to strand the riders in Spain.

After an unusually early start, the pack struck a rapid tempo leaving Samos. An escape of eight riders finally got away at 30 km, opening a gap that reached as high as 3:45.

The Astana team protected their leader throughout the 171.6 kilometers of jagged terrain. The team controled the race all day, keeping tabs on the escape with some help from Antón’s team, Euskaltel, and the Orbea team.

Tension was high in the final 25 km. The front of the peloton rattled with riders trying to pull one last stunt before Santiago. The Astana-led peloton did not allow it. The escape group grew visibly tired.

With the pack back together in the last km, Portuguese rider Sergio Ribeiro caught fire and won the stage in a sprint.

Alberto Contador coasted through the final meters, not far from the front with arms raised, cruciform, three fingers on each hand held high.

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010, Stage 5

Stage 5 profile


April 17 - Alberto rides a brilliant TT and claims the leadership

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010

Alberto concentrates on the countdown before his winning crono today
(Photo by Kahane)

Stage 4, April 17: Ponferrada—Ponferrada (CRI), 15.1 km

Alberto Contador celebrated his first time trial victory of the season today in a very special way by also stepping into the leadership of the Vuelta a Castilla y León. If he succeeds in wrapping up the overall victory tomorrow in Santiago de Compostela, he’ll be the first rider in the history of the race to win three editions, something that he especially wants to achieve. (AUDIO)

Contador said that he “was very motivated to do well and to try to get the win. I still hadn’t won a time trial this year, and that was the main goal. We’re working on improving the time trial bike and we’ve gotten a very good result, because it gained us time.”

He even said that the advantage was more than he expected. “I rode better than I expected, because you always have doubts and it was a very tough time trial, very good for climbers like Mosquera and Igor Antón.”

Tomorrow, on the final day of the race, he’ll have to work. “It’ll be a very tough day, because there’ll be people who are looking for escapes and the team will have to make a big effort, but I hope we’ll get through the day without any problems.” (Official press release, AC press room)

RESULTS: Contador in Stage 4, WINNER (total time 20:30). Contador in GC: LEADER (total time 13:05:55)

TOP FIVE: 1 Alberto Contador (13:05:55), 2 Igor Anton (0:41), 3 Ezequiel Mosquera (1:20), 4 Janez Brajkovic (1:30), 5 David Bernabeu (2:30)


PLAYBOOK: The time trial course at Ponferrada was a good one for climbers: an initial rise, followed by three hills, then 6 kilometers of descent to the finish line. The one intermediate check was located in the middle, at 8.7 kilometers.

Weather was variable. There were shadows under the bikes in Ponferrada, but wet roads out on the course. 107 riders signed in at the start line.

Alberto began the day in 2nd place overall, 13” behind Igor Antón, therefore he and Antón were the last two riders to begin. Alberto set the best time at the intermediate check, 11:11, well within Slovenian champion Jani Brajkovic’s time of 11:26.

Antón started strong, but passed the check 20” slower than Contador. As virtual race leader, Alberto charged toward the finish line, his every move clearly bent on victory, in contrast to his conservative style yesterday on El Morredero.

The question was, would Igor Antón recoup some lost seconds in the latter half of the course and save his jersey?

Alberto blazed in at 20:30, the only rider at that point to come in under 21:00, ahead of current leader Brajkovic’s time by 33”. Anton finished at 21:24, a great ride, especially for a pure climber. It wasn’t enough, however, to beat Contador.

Alberto Contador will wear the burgundy leader’s jersey tomorrow as the peloton culminates its pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela.

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010, Stage 4

Stage 4 profile


April 16 - Alberto good, Antón better

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León

Alberto Contador and Mauricio Soler on their way to a sprint for 2nd and 3rd (AC press room)

Stage 3, April 16: León—Alto de El Morredero, Ponferrada, 158.8 km

Alberto Contador congratulated today’s stage winner, Igor Antón, for a much-deserved victory after doing a great stage. “Everybody likes to win, but Igor was very strong,” he said about his third-place finish. (AUDIO)

“For me, it was a good result,” he continued. “In the end there were 13 seconds, that’s not just a little, but we’re going to see what happens in the time trial tomorrow.”

The stage was a fight between the great climbers, in which the wind played a major role. “Yes, we already knew that it’d be windy, but the interests of each rider were also an influence.

"When I saw how strong Igor’s attack was, I was a little more conservative, thinking about the riders on my wheel as well. I was thinking about what was going on behind and that Igor not get too many seconds on me.”

Looking ahead to the time trial, Alberto said that he would like it if “there were fewer seconds. It’s a short time trial, 15 kilometers, and pretty tough, which could work out very well for Igor, but I’m going to try to do what I can.”

After the Critérium International and his allergy problems, Contador has felt much better than he did in Corsica. “Yes, I’m doing much better. Even though now is a worse time, having a rainy day really cleans the atmosphere,” he said.

And about the climb of El Morredero, he acknowledged that it’s not one of his favorites. ”I had glanced at the profile and they had explained it to me. It’s not a very nice climb as far as I’m concerned. It’s very tough, but it has really long breaks and also the wind is too much of an influence.”

With respect to his rivals today, Alberto said that this demonstrates “the high level there is in this race and the difficulty of this tour, because the guys on top were four pure climbers.” (Official press release, AC press room)

RESULTS: Contador in Stage 3, 3rd (0:13 Igor Antón). Conador in the GC, 2nd (0:13 Igor Antón). Teams: Astana, 7th

TOP FIVE: 1 Igor Antón (total time 4:07:09); 2 Mauricio Soler (0:13); 3 Alberto Contador (0:13); 4 Ezequiel Mosquera (0:13); 5 Janez Brajkovic (1:10)


PLAYBOOK: The queen stage of the Vuelta a Castilla y León featured three categorized climbs, all in the last 70 kilometers: the Alto de Fondebadon (Cat. 1), the Alto de Onamio (Cat. 3) and the summit finish, the Alto del Morderro (Cat. 1).

The weather was a cool 13° with cloudy skies and wind at the start in León. Conditions worsened considerably on the climbs and there was intermittent rain all day.

Astana assumed control from the beginning, and Spanish continental teams animated the race. Throughout the stage, as various escapes were launched and re-absorbed, Astana remained at the helm.

Cutting to the action in the final kilometers—within 45 km to go, Andoni Blázquez of Orbea attacked and opened a gap. He was joined by Michael Kwiatkowski of Caja Rural, and the two continued in the cabeza, approaching the foot of El Morredero with a gap of about 2:00.

Blázquez faltered, Kwiatkowski was left on his own, holding on at 1:30 as the rain began and the road started to slope upward.

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010, Stage 3 The climb of El Morredero occupied the last 20 km of the stage, beginning with ascents of 6.1% average gradient, varied by long sections of relief and ramps as steep as 15%. It formed a tough climb, but not the relentlessly steep type of mountain that’s home to Contador.

Astana’s Dani Navarro went to the point of the chase group, put down the hammer and accelerated. He pulled a strong group of favorites: Contador, Mosquera, Antón, Menchov, Machado, Brajkovic, Plaza.

The climb progressed. Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia) made the decisive move that set up a thrilling finale, deftly manoeuvering a breakaway off an ambitious move by Stefan Denifl of Cervélo.

Contador countered. Igor Antón (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Janez Brajkovic grabbed his wheel. Mosquera moved ahead.

Contador countered again, Antón struggling to keep his wheel. Brajkovic sank. Behind them, Mauricio Soler (Caisse d’Epargne) began an effort to bridge.

Alberto and Antón reached Mosquera and the three continued the fight together, mano a mano a mano, getting an 18” advantage. Behind them, encroaching, Soler. And receding, the others: Menchov, Brajkovic, Tiago Machado, more.

At 4 km to goal, Soler made contact with the threesome. The ultimate dogfight began, not a mashing Ullrich-Armstrong power play, but an agile and lethal combat among ace Spanish riders, as different as Mahler is to Corelli. Antón attacked, Soler attacked, Contador responded.

In the last 2 km, Mosquera struck again and once more, Contador came back at him. Then Antón attacked hard, getting a small gap, stretching it, and riding off into the fog. Mosquera caught Alberto’s wheel and with Soler they chased the Basque rider into the final kilometer.

Antón won, a tremendous victory. Soler, Contador and Mosquera sprinted to the line in his draft, 13” later.

To editorialize, Stage 3 of the Vuelta a Castilla y León was the sort of brilliant match we’ve seen on occasions when Alberto Contador did not win. It’s a different cultivar from his spectacular, explosive victories.

Victory’s better, but lost battles like today—or with Evans and Valverde at Dauphiné 2009 or Toni Colom and Frank Schleck at Paris-Nice last year—are hard to consider second-best when we’re caught in the thrilling moment.

Photo, above left: Contador goes after Mosquera
(Tim de Waele public access gallery)

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010, Stage 3

Stage 3 profile


April 15 - Contador praises his team for smart gutsy riding

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León

Navarro, Stangeli and teammates shelter Contador during a tricky stage (AC press room)

Stage 2, April 15: Burgos—Carrión de los Condes (Palencia), 209.9 km

The second stage of the Vuelta a Castilla y León was settled in a sprint today after a very agitated finale in which the wind caused splits in the peloton. Astana, together with Rabobank, took the initiative and Alberto Contador was always at the front.

In the end, only Plaza and Marchante—two of the favorites on paper—lost time, but Contador, after the bad experience at Paris-Nice, was able to finish happy after such a stage. “The best thing has been the team’s work and how attentive they were.” (AUDIO)

“There was a little of everything in the stage,” he explained, “with a lot of rain, fog and wind. You had to pay very close attention all the time and the team did a really great job. We had to take control because four riders had escaped and had gotten a pretty good gap, but in the end we cooperated with Cervélo, who wanted to keep the leadership and were looking for a new sprint win."

"At the finish,” continued Alberto, “we knew that it was windy and we were very careful. In the last 20 kilometers there was a left-hand turn and a wind from the side that worked in our favor. We knew that it was going to create splits. We took the initiative along with Rabobank and our two teams ended up profiting. At the end I don’t know if there were time differences, but the best thing has been the team’s work and how attentive they were.”

Contador is looking forward to the queen stage now, with its finish at the top of El Morredero, which he’s still not familiar with. “I’ll see how the legs are working tomorrow, but now they’re going fairly well and I hope to have a good day. The climb is not especially consistent—it has spots for recovery—and maybe not knowing it is rather detrimental, but I’ll be talking with teammates to see what they can tell me.

"Tomorrow is the most important day, obviously, although those of us still within a small time spread will gamble for the GC in the time trial,” he concluded. (Official press release, AC press room)

RESULTS: Contador in Stage 2, 7th (s.t. Theo Bos). Contador in the GC, 7th (s.t. Theo Bos). Teams: Astana, 7th.


PLAYBOOK: Mother Nature was having a “día de perros” today, and inflicted the riders with nasty weather throughout 210 flat kilometers from Burgos to Carrion de los Condes. It was expected—what can you do about the weather? Likewise the sprint win by Theo Bos: it, too, had been accurately forecast by the experts.

Astana took control early, not wanting to be caught out by the adventurers or by splits caused by the wind.

A group of three riders from the combative teams who attacked yesterday tried again today. The lasting attempt, however, went forward at 30 km. KOM leader Iban Mayoz (Footon-Servetto), Steven Kruijswijk (Rabobank), José Herrada (Caja Rural) and José Vincente Toribio (Andalucía-Cajasur) established a break that wasn’t fully annulled until the very end of the stage.

Mayoz consolidated his KOM lead on the only mountain prize in Stage 2, the Alto del Embalse.

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León The peloton allowed the break longevity, but in reality they kept close tabs. In the final 15 kilometers, the teams with interests took over. Rabobank set a pace that broke the field, leaving 22 riders in the main chase group containing the favorites.

Of the 22 riders, 5 belonged to Astana (including Contador), 5 to Rabobank (including Menchov), and 4 to RadioShack (including Machado). As the remainder of the four-man escape were absorbed, Euskaltel led a chase group that brought the pack together at 5 kilometers from the line.

Astana and Rabobank drove hard for Contador and Menchov, but it was Cervélo who got their man, Bos, into place for the winning bunch sprint. Theo Bos remains in the oxblood leader’s jersey.

Concerning Astana, Alberto and four of his teammates—Pereiro, Jufré, Navarro and Stangelj—are all even with Theo Bos in overall time. Astana is 7th in the teams classification, led by Rabobank, and is tied in overall time with Team RadioShack in 6th.

Photo: Riders had to stay on guard as the wind caused splits in the peloton (nortecastilla.es)

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010, Stage 2

Stage 2 profile


April 14 - Home and dry against the odds, and all ends well

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León

The winners of the last two Giros - Contador and Denis Menchov (AC press room)

Stage 1, April 14: Belorado (Burgos)—Burgos, 157.7 km

Alberto Contador finished Stage 1 of the Vuelta a Castilla y León today safely and without incident. Astana controlled the race in order to avoid surprises before the key day, next Friday. “It was a very tense stage because everybody already knows that this is a windy area, and that accounted for a lot of nerves,” explained Alberto. (AUDIO)

At the finish line, however, everything ended as predicted, with a sprint and with no gaps in the general classification. “The team was very careful at all times,” said Contador. “We were in front in case someone made a move, but in the end we got through the day without any problems.”

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León The day threatened rain, but the peloton stayed dry to the end. “We were very lucky,” said Alberto. “We were all bundled up at the start but luckily we hardly got wet.”

Both he and the rest of the favorites passed a comparatively uneventful day. “You see people on the front, like Igor Antón, Machado, Menchov or Mosquera, all paying close attention, but on a day like today you can’t draw any conclusions.”

Tomorrow might be different, perhaps, although Contador thinks that the key will be El Morredero. “In this tour you never know, because it’s usually windy, but of course the stage that will put its stamp on the race will be the one at El Morredero.”

Until then, Contador is closely monitoring his physical state, which yesterday still wasn’t extraordinary. “Today I didn’t hit the pedaling rhythm that I like, but it’s that I arrived here very well rested, thinking about the classics.

"I’ve rested for four days and that might make both today and tomorrow a little less lively than usual.” (Official press release, AC press room)

RESULTS: Contador in Stage 1: 19th (s.t. Theo Bos). Contador in GC: 19th (s.t. Bos)


PLAYBOOK: Stage of the 2010 Vuelta a Castilla y León was a rolling stage of 157.7 kilometers from Belorado to Burgos. The centerpiece of the parcours was the 2nd-category climb of the Alto de la Pedraja at kilometer 72. The less-taxing final kilometers set the scene for a sprint finish.

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León Overcast skies, cold wind and forecasts of chubascos (heavy showers) didn’t keep crowds from gathering in Belorado to send off the 112 riders who started. Temperatures hovered around 12 - 13°.

The first escape left at 15 km. In it were Iban Mayoz (Footon Servetto), José Vicente Toribio (Andalucia CajaSur) and Marcos García (Xacobeo Galicia). The three were kept close and by the climb of the Pedraja were being held at 1:40. The order of passage over the Pedraja was 1) Mayoz, 2) Toribio, 3) García.

With Contador universally considered the favorite, the Astana team assumed control. At km 88, the escape was caught. A good attempt was made by Oleg Chuzhda (Caja Rural) and Mikel Ilundain (Orbea) at km 93. They stayed at the cabeza until Cervélo took over and increased the pace in favor of their sprinter, Theo Bos.

Chuzhda’s luck ran out 7 km before the finish line. Bos won the sprint, followed by Graeme Brown of Rabobank. The Astana riders finished in the pack with the same time as Bos, except for Jesús Hernández, who lost just over four minutes.

Photos: left - A mold of Contador's foot and hand; right - Alberto is a popular young man! (Feliz Ordonez, Reuters)

Vuelta a Castilla y León 2010, Stage 1

Stage 1 profile


April 13 - Now the Astana folk longen to goon on victory pilgrimages

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León

Alberto Contador is off to Burgos tomorrow, for the start of his next race, the Vuelta a Castilla y León, on Wednesday.

“It’s a route that I like and this tour has always been good for me,” he commented. “This year it falls later on the calendar and that’s not good for the allergies, but the forecast is for rain and that’ll be good for me.”

Alberto singled out the course for the 15-kilometer time trial: “It’s a good distance for me, and so is the finish at Morredero. I’m not familiar with it, but they tell me that it’s hard, although not relentless, but with some ramps.”

About the Astana team, Contador says that he’s very happy. “It’s operating very well, because my team always has a difficult challenge in races—controlling—and we’re having a good season, controlling each race by force or taking advantage of tactical situations.

"I see all the riders as very excited and I’m happy because we’re going to have problems drawing up a list for the Tour since there are so many riders with possibilities for going.”

Contador finally fielded some questions about Armstrong and the Texan’s recent schedule changes that mean the two riders won’t meet again before the Tour. “Each person chooses the schedule that he thinks is best,” he said, not wanting to enter into controversy.

“I think that he’s only motivated in terms of his own planning. Each person has his own way of preparing. I like to compete fairly early in the season and even though his schedule isn’t what I’d like best in my own case, he’ll do what he judges is most effective for himself.” (Official press release, AC press room)

The XXV Vuelta Ciclista Castilla y León runs Wednesday, April 14 through Saturday, April 18. The five-stage tour will trace the pilgrim's Way of St. James to its finale in Santiago de Compostela.

Riding for Astana: Alberto Contador, David de la Fuente, Jesús Hernández, Josep Jufré, Daniel Navarro, Benjamín Noval, Gorazd Stangelj. Directeur sportif: Guiseppe Martinelli

More information at nortecastilla.es


March 23 - Peloton will make pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in the 25th-anniversary edition, April 14-18

XXV Vuelta a Castilla y León With Alberto Contador as the main attraction, the Vuelta a Castilla y León has revealed a route that highlights the Alto de El Morredero and a historic finish in Santiago de Compostela

The Vuelta a Castilla y León has announced an especially attractive route for the 2010 edition, which was revealed in an official presentation ceremony yesterday in Valladollid.

The organization is offering the route as a gift to fans this April on the occasion of its 25th anniversary. Dates for the “Castellanoleonesa” tour are Wednesday through Sunday, April 14 - 18.

The parcours will follow the entire length of the traditional pilgrims’ route (El Camino de Santiago) through Castilla y León, from Belorado (Burgos) to Santiago de Compostela, finishing in Galicia for the first time ever and, along the way, passing through representative locations on the Camino, like Atapuerca, Burgos, Castrojeriz, Frómista, Carrión de los Condes, Sahagún, Mansilla de las Mulas, León, Astorga and Ponferrada.

Key points this year will be the 15-kilometer individual time trial at Ponferrada in Stage 3 and the arrival on the Alto de El Morredero in Stage 4. During these two days, the big draw of the race, Triple Crown-winner Alberto Contador, might boost his tally of victories in 2010, since the two stages suit his characteristics perfectly.

The XXV Castilla y León expects plenty of other stars to join Contador to form an enviable list that includes Bradley Wiggins, Óscar Pereiro, Ezequiel Mosquera and Denis Menchov.

Stage 1, April 14: Belorado (Burgos)—Burgos, 157.7 km
Stage 2, April 15: Burgos—Carrión de los Condes (Palencia), 209.9 km
Stage 3, April 16: León—Alto de El Morredero, Ponferrada, 158.8 km
Stage 4, April 17: Ponferrada—Ponferrada (CRI), 15.1 km
Stage 5, April 18: Samos (Lugo)—Santiago de Compostela, 176 km


March 16 - Contador opts out of Catalunya and Basque Country but will add in classics

Paris-Nice 2010

The Paris-Nice king's next races feature some jewels (AC press room)

Alberto Contador has decided to change the next dates on his race calendar after analyzing his performance at the Volta ao Algarve and Paris-Nice with his technical staff.

“I’ve had very good results in the first two races of the year, my preparation is well under way, so we’ve decided to change the calendar in order to look for less-exhausting races both for me and for my team,” explained Alberto Contador.

After an edition of Paris-Nice that demanded a great physical and mental effort, Alberto Contador has decided to give up both the Volta a Catalunya and the Vuelta al País Vasco.

Instead, he will take the start at the Criterium International (March 27 and 28), the Vuelta a Castilla y León (April 14-18), the Fleche Wallone (April 21) and Liége-Bastogne-Liége (April 25).

“The Criterium is a race that suits my characteristics very well and I’m also excited about riding it because it’s very prestigious,” said Alberto. “The Vuelta a Castilla y León is a race that I’m very fond of and the change of dates this year works out well because it gives me a chance to go to the classics, where I mainly hope to get some experience. The idea of riding them really appeals to me, because they have a special charm, but I’m conscious that there’ll be other riders there with better ability to fight for the win.”

Alberto Contador concluded by saying that he had decided “to sacrifice Catalunya and País Vasco because of my preparation, because it’s well under way and I don’t want to run the risk of overdoing it. Besides, that way I’ll have the opportunity to line up with other riders on the team that I’ll be with at the Tour, as is the case with Vinokourov.”

After this new program, Contador will start a short break to rest and begin preparing for the Tour de France, including, just prior to the Tour, the Dauphiné Libéré. (Official press release, AC press room)


La Course au Soleil, March 7-14

Paris-Nice 2010

The first pistol is fired in France in 2010 (AC press room)


2009 RACES

Alberto Contador 2009

Race reports: Spanish Championship, Dauphiné Libéré, País Vasco, Castilla y León, Paris-Nice, Volta ao Algarve, criteriums


2008 RACES

Race Watch 2008

The Year of the Triple Crown: Reports, results, photos, comments


All text © 2007-2008 Rebecca Bell, contadorfans@hotmail.com.
Web design by Nicky Orr and Modem Operandi. Masthead photo credits: (1) bbc.co.uk (2) Liz Kreutz, kreutzphotography.com.