Rider of the week
On May 31st, Alberto Contador got to kiss again the Trofeo Senza Fine, seven years after his first victory in the Giro d’Italia. If his 2008 triumph came at the end of a hard-fought race, the same can’t be said about this one, because he was so dominant that his victory was basically sealed with around a week left of the event. The 32-year-old Spaniard didn’t win a stage, didn’t have the most powerful team, but neither of these prevented him from taking the maglia rosa and with it a well-deserved success, his seventh in a Grand Tour, which puts him on the same level with Fausto Coppi and Miguel Indurain, two other huge legends of the sport.
During the three weeks of the race, from Sanremo to Milan, Alberto Contador not only controlled his rivals, but showed great intelligence and tactical masterclass. Basically, he managed all the difficult moment he encountered and made sure he didn’t give his opponents any chance to come back in the game, all these while making sure he finishes the race as fresh as possible in order to tackle this July’s Tour de France at a high level, where he hopes to take his first yellow jersey in six years.
As soon as he was crowned champion, the leader of Tinkoff-Saxo announced that there won’t be any moveable feast, just a short celebration with the team and then back to altitude training before the Route du Sud, underlining his mentality which was, over the years, one of his main weapons in his fight with the likes of Andy Schleck or Chris Froome. A rider who always has a huge hunger for success, Alberto Contador is now at the halfway point in what could turn out to be his finest season yet, as he’s gunning for an historic Giro-Le Tour double.