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Page last updated at 17:20 GMT, Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Contador opts to miss 2009 Giro

Former Tour de France winner Alberto Contador
Contador is hoping to win his second Tour de France title next year

Spanish rider Alberto Contador will miss next year's Giro d'Italia and may also skip the Spanish Vuelta to focus on winning the Tour de France.

The 25-year-old Astana rider won the Italian and Spanish grand tours this year after victory in the 2007 Tour.

"Having won the Giro and the Vuelta this year, I'm going to return to the Tour to try and win," he said.

"I will not participate in the Giro 2009. I'll prepare for the Tour by racing in other competitions."

He added: "I'm certain to compete in races after the Tour, but I still have to decide whether I'll participate in the Vuelta or not."

Last month, seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong announced he would be joining the Astana team and would compete in the Giro for the first time

Although Contador initially indicated that Armstrong's arrival may force him to move to a rival outfit, he later agreed to stay with the Kazakh-backed team.

Among the races that Contador is considering are the Paris-Nice, which he won in 2007, the Castilla and Leon Vuelta and possibly the Basque Country Vuelta.

The Spaniard did not race in the 2008 Tour de France for Astana because his new team was barred for previous doping violations.

see also
Armstrong reveals Tour concerns
14 Oct 08 |  Cycling
Armstrong comeback gets go-ahead
08 Oct 08 |  Cycling
Armstrong to return with Astana
24 Sep 08 |  Cycling
Mixed reaction to Armstrong news
10 Sep 08 |  Cycling
Armstrong to make shock comeback
10 Sep 08 |  Cycling

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