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Alberto Contador exclusive: My only intention is to win

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Alberto Contdaor (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) went out on the attack and was rewarded with a stage win plus the Vuelta's leader's jersey.

Alberto Contdaor (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) went out on the attack and was rewarded with a stage win plus the Vuelta's leader's jersey.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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'El Pistolero' Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff) fires again in the 2012 Vuelta a Espana

'El Pistolero' Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff) fires again in the 2012 Vuelta a Espana
(Image credit: Unipublic)
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Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) the best three of the 2012 Vuelta a Espana

Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) the best three of the 2012 Vuelta a Espana
(Image credit: Unipublic)
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Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) on the podium after his solo victory in stage 17 at the Vuelta.

Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) on the podium after his solo victory in stage 17 at the Vuelta.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Last year he descended onto the stage in cage. Things have moved on since then and now Contador can show off his cooking skills

Last year he descended onto the stage in cage. Things have moved on since then and now Contador can show off his cooking skills
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank)

Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank) ran out of teammates in the second half of the race

Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank) ran out of teammates in the second half of the race
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Giro leader Alberto Contador tackles the Plan de Corones mountain time trial, conducted on a dirt road.

Giro leader Alberto Contador tackles the Plan de Corones mountain time trial, conducted on a dirt road.
(Image credit: AFP)

Immediately on his return from a ban for doping Alberto Contador delivered a searing win in the Vuelta a España thanks to a devastating ambush. El Pistolero is back with a vengeance… Or is he? As Procycling discovers, Contador envies the lower pressure on those less successful, has wanted to quit the sport altogether and, despite winning it twice, refuses to put the Tour de France on a pedestal. He may not even race it next year. Yet ambition still burns brightly for the Madrileño: “If I go to a race, my only intention is to win it,” is how he puts it. But where, exactly, will that ambition take him now?

When we ask Alberto Contador if he has ever thought of quitting cycling, he answers without a moment’s hesitation.

The Return

The Tour de France

 

Alberto Contador and Joaquim Rodriguez (left) lock horns at the Vuelta. Roberto Bettini

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Did he surprise himself at how deep he was willing to go that day? “Not really but there were points where I had no idea if I could keep up the same pace all the way to the finish. It was a long ‘time trial’ and from the first point that I got across to the break, I was working on the front, first with [team-mate Sérgio] Paulinho then with Paolo Tiralongo [Astana] and finally alone.”

This feature appeared in the December issue of Procyclinig. To subscribe to the magazine click here.