Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank owner and manager Bjarne Riis has revealed his team's squad for the forthcoming Vuelta a España, which starts next weekend. Spanish star Alberto Contador, the winner of the race in 2008, will lead the team in what will be his first grand tour after his return from a six-month doping-related suspension.
Contador is currently racing at the Eneco Tour, where he lies in tenth place in the overall general classification with one stage left to go. It is his first competitive action since February and he is using the race as a stepping stone to the Vuelta, sharpening his fitness and competitive instincts.
"The sole objective [at the Vuelta] is to win the general classification with Alberto Contador," Riis told the team website. "Alberto has shown strength back at the Eneco Tour and has regained match fitness. He is ready to win this final grand tour of the season.
"The selection of our squad for the Vuelta is obviously closely in line with that clear goal. We have tried to put together a group of riders who can help Alberto throughout the race, both on the flat stages and in the mountains. There is also plenty of experience in the squad in the grand tour context. I think we have chosen a very strong team.
"I believe that Alberto has a great chance of winning the Vuelta, but we are certainly up against some tough opponents and strong teams. I predict an exciting race. The potential for both drama and entertainment are clearly present on the Spanish roads."
Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank squad for the 2012 Vuelta a España: Alberto Contador, Nicki Sorensen, Matteo Tosatto, Rafal Majka, Sergio Paulinho, Bruno Pires, Benjamin Noval, Jesus Hernandez and Dani Navarro.