Alberto Contador hopes to defend his title at this year’s Tour de France. Together with his teammates at Astana, Contador rode through the Pyrenean stages for four days.
Contador was with Dmitri Fofonov, Paolo Tiralongo, Benjamin Noval, Daniel Navarro, David de la Fuente, Jesus Hernandez and Oscar Pereiro. He also met up with the Schleck brothers, Andy and Frank of the Saxo Bank team. They approached the Col de Tourmalet from the Col de Soulor direction, opposite the road which the Astana team took.
The Tour’s stages 14-17 will be at the Pyrenees. The first day will be on Ax-3 Domaines plus two mountainous days; then the stages will culminate on the final day’s finish at the Tourmalet. Contador states, “We’ve seen the stages that will decide the Tour.”
Contador sees the stage win at the Tourmalet might just be a preview as to the overall standing of the race. Contador calls it “the last chance of victory for the climbers”.
The Dauphiné Libéré is Contador’s next stop. The Spanish captain is working on his form and preparing himself to be ready for the Alpine stages. “The [sensations] are good, yes, but not yet like those of the Tour, because there are still three and a half weeks before the start and this is not a good time, it is still a time of allergies, and that limits me a little.”
Contador further adds, “I’m doing the preparation as I wanted. After a serious stop after the Classics (about 10 days off the bike) it was hard to start again, but everything has gone as planned. I’ll do the Dauphiné without pressure, as a tune-up, because the preparation is perfect.”