Vuelta a España - Alberto Contador: It's turning into an incredible Vuelta for me
Aug 29 2017 03:28 am CET

Vuelta a España - Alberto Contador: It's turning into an incredible Vuelta for me
Vuelta a España - Alberto Contador: It's turning into an incredible Vuelta for me
Photo of Alberto Contador © Mary Cárdenas /

During the first rest day of the Vuelta a España, Alberto Contador talked about the bad days that have virtually taken him out of the GC fight and the two weeks to come.

The rider had digestive problems during the first week of the Spanish Grand Tour, but has now recovered and his fighting ways are back. "I think we can split the Vuelta until now in two distinct parts," said Contador. "The first part absolutely wasn't part of the plan, especially given how good I felt coming into the Vuelta, when I was training in Madrid.

"The other part is, I think my performance has been at a very, very high level, on stage finishes that haven't really suited me. That makes me optimistic about the rest of the Vuelta. I think I'm in pretty good form, and we'll see what I can do."

Even at more than three minutes from race leader Chris Froome (Team Sky), the Spaniard doesn't want to stop fighting for the overall victory. "I think battling for a stage win and the GC are compatible," he explained. "I don't want to discard either of them. We'll see as the race progresses day by day.

"I don't want to rule out either option. To tell the truth, I'm really enjoying my racing, and I'm happy because perhaps a lot of people may have thought I was only coming to the Vuelta a España to say goodbye, or through a sense of duty, but it's not like that."

Contador thinks the stages ahead suit him and doesn't rule out that he can win time back in the mountains. "In principle, in theory, the climbs that lie ahead of us should be better for me, no? But, look, I think, first of all, I'd have to pass all the riders who are ahead of me, and there are a lot of them," he commented.

"It's true that, every day except yesterday, I've made up time on all my rivals. So that's good. And I think that, in the time trial, I can do pretty well compared with most of them too. So it's a matter of trying to get as close as possible and into the best possible position with respect to Froome."

Even though he knows the task of winning back time is difficult, he keeps enjoying this last moment before retirement. "Given that it's my last race, I'm trying really to enjoy it. I'm savouring it. It's turning into an incredible Vuelta for me. I knew it was going to be a special Vuelta, and it was a good decision to say goodbye here, but I'm more and more certain that there is no better place that this to do so."




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