Contador aims for Tour de France swansong

Marquez suffers big crash in MotoGP Australian GP FP1

With 2016 likely to be Alberto Contador's final year in the saddle, the Spaniard has indicated he would like to go out on top.

Going out on top for Contador means winning the 2016 Tour de France, which he is already preparing for, despite the race being ten months away.

"I have always wanted to retire at the highest level…that's the way I want people to remember me," the 32-year-old told cyclingnews.com.

"The primordial objective is the Tour de France. I'm a rider who likes to be competitive in every race I enter – I want to do well in the races at the start of the year – but the focus will be purely on the Tour. The only thing I can guarantee is that I'm preparing for it 100 per cent.

"I'm planning a, let's say, traditional calendar. I will for certain start competing in the third week of February at either the Volta ao Algarve or the Vuelta a Andalucia.

"Then I'll do a race that will probably be the most important for me, and that's either Tirreno-Adriatico or Paris-Nice. That will be crucial in giving me a base. Then I'll do another one, shortly after, likely to be Catalunya. Then I will start to really focus; I'll do the Dauphiné, and then the Tour. That's more or less the plan."

The seven-time Grand Tour winner attempted the impossible in 2015, as he went for the Giro/Tour double, which has not been completed since Marco Pantani in 1998. 

While Contador flew up and over all the Italian alps to secure a definitive Giro d’Italia victory, fatigue set in during the Tour de France and he could only manage fifth.

Despite this, the Tinkoff-Saxo rider was happy with his 2015. 

"I am very happy with the season that I've done," he added.

"I enjoyed trying the double. I sacrificed myself like never before to try and pull it off. If I had to go back to try it again I would make some changes."

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