Tour de France winner still contemplating a second Grand Tour tilt in 2015 with Nairo Quintana aleady confirmed for the Vuelta a España

Chris Froome (Team Sky) will decide within the next week to ten days whether he’ll ride at the Vuelta a España and target a second Grand Tour victory in a year.

A number of big names who have missed out on their main targets for the year, have already confirmed their presence at the Spanish tour and they could be about to be joined by the Tour de France winner.

Vinenzo Nibali, who suffered a disappointing Tour as he attempted to defend his 2014 title, will line-up with Astana teammates Fabio Aru and Mikel Landa, who finished second and third respectively at the Giro d’Italia.

Tour runner-up Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and Tejay van Garderen (BMC), who abandoned, will also hope to score a major victory at the Vuelta to salvage their seasons.

In the week or so since the Tour ended, Froome has been appearing at a number of criteriums in Belgium and France and was speaking at an exhibition race in Castillon-la-Bataille near Bordeaux when he confirmed he and the team were close to a decision.

“The Vuelta?” I’ll still give it a week to ten days to decide,” he told L’Equipe. “And I’ll also look at it with the team.”

Two runner-up finishes at the Vuelta, behind Juan José Cobo in 2011 and Alberto Contador in 2014, means there’s unfinished business for Froome at the season’s third Grand Tour.

Contador and Froome will go head to head again at the Tour this year (Yuzuru Sunada)

Chris Froome had to settle for second behind Alberto Contador at the 2014 Vuelta (Yuzuru Sunada)

But with only 27 days between the finish of the Tour and the start of the Vuelta, a second general classification challenge would be a tough ask, particularly after the fatigue Contador showed at the Tour after he targeted an historic Giro/Tour double.

“I know it would be a massive challenge to back it up with another grand tour now,” Froome said after the Tour in July, “especially to go with the aim of going for the general classification again.”

While the 2015 Vuelta route looks as mountainous as previous editions, particularly with the gruelling stage 11 in Andorra, the addition of a 38.7km individual time trial in Burgos on stage 17 will sit as an advantage to the Brit over pure climbers like Quintana.

The 21 stages of the Vuelta run between August 22 and September 13, starting with a team time trial in Puerto Banus and ending with a nighttime finish in the capital, Madrid.

Chris Froome’s Pinarello Dogama F8

  • RobTM

    “stage 11 in Andorra, the edition of a 38.7km”, looks like “addition” was meant