Menchov won't defend Vuelta title

Menchov took home the Vuelta's trophy last year.

Menchov took home the Vuelta's trophy last year. (Image credit: AFP)

Rabobank's Denis Menchov won't defend his 2007 Vuelta a España title this year, opting instead to concentrate on his Giro d'Italia and Tour de France campaigns. Defending his title at the Spanish Grand Tour is not as high a priority to the Russian as the sport's other two major crowns.

"I want to win the Tour," he declared to "The Giro is a perfect build-up for the Tour, that's why I am not riding the Vuelta."

Rabobank dominated the Spanish Grand Tour last year, with Menchov riding to a brilliant Stage 10 victory and winning the combination and mountains classifications in addition to his overall victory. The 30 year-old also won the points classification at last year's Volta a Catalunya.

"With Rabobank we are capable of competing in all types of races," he explained. "We have riders for Tours, sprinters like Oscar Freire and with Juan Antonio Flecha we have some fire power in the one day classics."

The 91st Giro d'Italia will run from May 10 to June 1, while the 95th Tour de France will run from July 5 - 27.

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