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Sánchez to stay with Euskaltel, targets Lombardia

Samuel Sánchez will remain in orange throughout 2009 and aims for the top spot in the Giro di Lombardia this week-end

Samuel Sánchez will remain in orange throughout 2009 and aims for the top spot in the Giro di Lombardia this week-end (Image credit: Susanne Goetze)

Olympic champion Samuel Sánchez has announced that he will not change teams but remain with his Euskaltel-Euskadi squad for next season. The 30 year-old, who started his professional career with the Basque team in 2000, is the only non-Basque rider of the outfit. A native of Oviedo, Asturias, Sánchez nevertheless spent a lot of time in the Basque country during his Junior and U23 years and feels great attachment to the team.

Sánchez has not yet signed the contract because of a few "details", but already made it clear the deal was almost done. "The negotiations went well," he told the Diario Vasco. "They told me they couldn't meet my initial demands so I lowered them a bit, and they increased their offer. I see myself at Euskaltel."

The Olympic road race champion now targets the last ProTour race of the season, the Giro di Lombardia on Saturday, in which he already finished second and third these past two years. "I will race the Giro de Piemonte [today - ed.] and Lombardia. In Paris-Tours, I felt good. I finished in the front group. It was over 252 kilometres, and I managed the distance very well. In Lombardia, I will try to be a contender," said Sánchez.

"The key to this race is the Ghisallo climb. If you pass it in front, you can win," he added. (AS)

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