by Antonio J. Salmerón
Alejandro Valverde, winner of the UCI ProTour, has said today that his 2007 calendar may be a bit differente from this year's. Valverde commented that he still hasn't determined if he will participate in the Vuelta, because he wants to arrive at the world championships well rested.
The Spaniard plans to start the next season in the Challange de Mallorca, followed by the Vuelta a Murcia, where he won the second stage and the overall this year. At the end of March, Valverde will take part in the classic Milan-San Remo and the Vuelta al País Vasco, in which he finished second in 2006.
After taking a rest, Valverde will take on the UCI ProTour classics, which he won this year thanks to his victories in the Flecha-Wallone and the prestigious Liega-Bastogne-Liega. The Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears leader has said he may also participate in the Amstel Gold Race in Belgium before preparing more seriously for the Tour of France. He will return to the Tour with a top ten finish, and avoiding crashes as his top goals.
Before the Tour, Valverde will also participate in the Dauphine Liberé and the Spainish national championiships. After the Tour, depending on his form, Valverde will decide whether to contest the Vuelta or take a break in order to arrive rested at the world championships. He hopes to improve upon the bronze medal he earned in Switzerland this year.