Alberto Contador has said he is close to signing a contract with a new team for the 2017 season.
Speaking from a Critérium du Dauphiné pre-race press conference today, the champion Spaniard categorically shelved retirement plans and said he would compete next year.
The 33-year-old has been presented with numerous offers and is believed to be negotiating a two-year deal that won’t be announced until the official August transfer window opens. His current Tinkoff team is set to fold at the end of this season through want of a sponsor.
“I feel good. I felt that if I’d lost even one per cent of my physical ability then my decision would have been different,” he said.
“I’ll give it 100 per cent. I’ll be doing the same things that I’ve always done, doing the same work, making the same sacrifices that I have always done ever since my first year as a professional.”
Contador last year voiced plans to retire at the end of this season but partially reneged on that in April after he won the Vuelta al Pais Vasco.
He will lead Tinkoff at the Critérium du Dauphiné, which starts tomorrow with a steep four-kilometre prologue time trial in Les Gets.