Alberto Contador believes that he and his Trek-Segafredo team face an uphill struggle against the mammoth resources of Team Sky. However, he says that he is determined to work together with his new teammates to ensure a tight-knit and strong unit by the start of the 2017 Tour de France.
Contador has repeatedly stated that the Tour de France is his main objective for next season. The Spaniard has tried and failed to add to his tally of overall victories at the Tour de France in recent years. Following his disqualification from the 2010 Tour de France, Contador's last victory in the French Grand Tour in 2009. This season, he left the race midway through stage nine after a disappointing opening week that saw him crash twice in the first two stages.
"I will work hard for this great objective because my objective is to win, always win," Contador told Marca. "[Team Sky] has a budget of more than 35 million euros and this is the situation we're working in, but it is complicated. It is very complicated to compete in these conditions. They can make two or three teams at the level for the Tour, but in the end, we are doing a lot of work so that we all arrive at the highest possible level for the Tour."
After six seasons on the same team, Contador moves to Trek-Segafredo following the disbandment of the Tinkoff squad at the end of this season. The move means new teammates, a new set-up and a return to Trek bikes having ridden on Specialized since 2010. There will be some consistency for Contador with his loyal lieutenant Jesus Hernandez and Michael Gogl, while new teammates include Bauke Mollema, Jarlinson Pantano and Peter Stetina.
With next year's Tour de France likely to be decided in the mountains, support on the climbs will be as important as ever.
"If you have a great team it is the key, without it isn't possible," Contador explained. "There are other teams with more budget and stronger, but ours is prepared to work hard to be a strong team and to be able to compete with the best. We have to make a great group inside and outside the race."