Vincenzo Nibali to skip Giro and focus on Tour defence in 2015

Vincenzo Nibali reacts to the unveiling of the 2015 Tour de France, saying he is likely to skip the Giro d'Italia and that the penultimate day will decide the race

Italy's Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) explained that he could race both the 2015 Giro d'Italia and Tour de France after attending the presentation of the latter race in Paris today. However, the 2014 Tour champion earlier indicated that he would skip the Giro to defend his Tour title.

"We all know that to fight for a Grand Tour win is exhausting," said Nibali. "It's possible to do them both, but I'll have to talk about it at the first team camp. Anyway, I want to be there."

Nibali added that he would not race all three Grand Tours as Tinkoff-Saxo team owner Oleg Tinkov proposed to him, Chris Froome (Sky), Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar), saying "It's not possible."

The Italian media have been reporting, however, that the 29-year-old Sicilian will focus on defending his Tour de France title and leave the 2015 Giro d'Italia to Astana team-mate Fabio Aru.

Aru, 24, won the Montecampione stage and placed third overall behind winner Quintana at the Giro d'Italia this year. At the Vuelta a España, he won two stages.

Froome explained in a press release that he might only race the Giro and Vuelta, and skip the Tour because of a lack of time trial kilometres. Contador and Quintana have both scheduled the Tour for 2015.

The Tour starts with a 13.7-kilometre time trial and includes 13 kilometres of pavé in stage four while it also features six summit finishes in the high mountains.

"It's a nice Tour, there is only one individual time trial and a demanding team time trial,” continued Nibali. “The first week will be very nervous because of the wind and cobbles, the second week will be ordinary and the final week we'll have the climbs that will decide the race.”

Nibali gained 2-35 minutes on Contador and 3-27 on eventual Tour runner up, Jean-Christophe Peraud (Ag2r La Mondiale) when the 2014 raced over the cobbles to Arenberg this year. Froome abandoned early in the stage due to crashes.

"I like the cobbled stage, but I know it will be a very difficult stage and it will be important to see it first, trying bike and materials. I believe that the Alpe d'Huez stage will have the last word in the 2015 Tour."

More from the Tour de France 2015

Vincenzo Nibali dismisses Oleg Tinkov's Grand Tour Challenge

Fabio Aru will lead Astana at the 2015 Giro d'Italia, as Vincenzo Nibali looks to defend Tour de France title

Tour de France 2015 route

Take a look at every stage of the route of the 2015 Tour de France

Chris Froome says he might not ride Tour de France 2015

Team Sky rider suggests he may prioritise the Giro and Vuelta in 2015

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Gregor Brown

Gregor Brown is an experienced cycling journalist, based in Florence, Italy. He has covered races all over the world for over a decade - following the Giro, Tour de France, and every major race since 2006. His love of cycling began with freestyle and BMX, before the 1998 Tour de France led him to a deep appreciation of the road racing season.