Having waited for the outcome of Roman Kreuziger's appeal against a provisional suspension by the UCI at the Court of Arbitration for Sport before naming its final Vuelta a España team, Tinkoff-Saxo have revealed its nine riders for the Spanish grand tour with the Czech rider losing his appeal.
Alberto Contador has recovered from the Tour de France crash in which he broke his right tibia and the five-time grand tour winner will line up in Jerez on Saturday. The 31-year-old admits that stage wins will be more attainable than a high overall placing due to his lack of training since the crash.
Tinkoff-Saxo won two stages at the Giro d'Italia along with three stages and the mountains classification at the Tour and will be hoping to round out the year with more grand tour success at the Vuelta.
"It's going to be a special race for us," director sportif, Philippe Mauduit said on the team website.
"Just like the last part of the Tour de France, we'll take one stage at a time. Our line-up offers a number of opportunities."
The current Danish national road race champion Michael Valgren is the only rider selected who will be making his grand tour debut. The 22-year-old, who is in his first year with the team, recently won the Tour of Denmark on the final day.
Mauduit explained that the team goals for the race will be land a stage win and is confident that Contador, a two-time Vuelta winner, will be hard to beat on the summit finishes.
"With Alberto we have the chance of participating in the high mountain stage finishes and on the medium mountain stages and in the more flat terrain, we have a series of riders who will be able to nail the stage win that we are targeting in this year's edition of the Vuelta," Mauduit said.
He added, that while the Spaniard's form is unknown, the team will still be looking to animate the race over the three weeks.
"Alberto crashed and broke his leg during the Tour and I'm not sure of it's plausible to aim for the overall win after only a few weeks of hard training in the mountains but we will flash the jersey in the race and you will notice us."
Tinkoff-Saxo for the Vuelta a Espana: Alberto Contador, Chris Anker Sørensen, Daniele Bennati, Matteo Tosatto, Sergio Paulinho, Oliver Zaugg, Ivan Rovny, Jesus Hernandez and Michael Valgren.
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