Cycling: Contador signs new one-year deal with Tinkoff-Saxo

Tue Mar 10, 2015 12:27pm EDT
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MADRID (Reuters) - Twice Tour de France champion Alberto Contador has signed a new one-year contract that will keep him at the Tinkoff-Saxo team until the end of next season.

"Tinkoff-Saxo is delighted to announce the Spanish six-times Grand Tour winner will remain as its leader until the end of the 2016 season," the Russian-owned team said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Alberto Contador is undoubtedly one of the world's best stage racers and a legend in his lifetime."

Last month the Spanish cyclist indicated that next season could be his last as a professional.

"We have been thoroughly assessing all aspects and in Tinkoff-Saxo we have a group that can fully guarantee the challenge of the Grand Tours," said Contador on Tuesday.

"It is true that it was important for 2016 to have these guarantees and for that reason I am very happy to have closed the deal."

Team manager Bjarne Riis said it was the best decision Contador could have made.

"I am obviously very happy Alberto extended his contract," added Riis. "Everybody knows I am a big fan of his and I look forward to working with him for another year.

"It's also extremely important for the team to have as a leader a champion of his caliber. I have built a big part of the team around him and Tinkoff-Saxo will continue to fully support him."

(Writing by Tony Jimenez, editing by Justin Palmer)

Tinkoff-Saxo team rider Alberto Contador of Spain crosses the finish line of the 161-km (100 miles) eighth stage of the Tour de France cycling race between Tomblaine and Gerardmer La Mauselaine, July 12, 2014.      REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen