Alberto Contador (Madrid, 36 years old), The only Spanish cyclist to win the big three in stages, he considers that cutting stages in the Tour, Giro and Vuelta would go against the essence of that type of tests and believes that the Tour would be the most benefited race in case of undergoing the dates review by the coronavirus “because it is the most important and everyone wants to go.”
In an interview with Efe from his home, where he keeps the quarantine while directing online training, he comments on current events in the world of cycling and believes that “Froome would be one of the most interested in playing the Tour, because of achieving his fifth victory.”
How does a used athlete to quarantine to freedom? The quarantine I carry well, although it deprives you of freedom. I have the slight advantage of having a certain habit, since when I went to concentrations, for example to Mount Teide, I would go outside to shoot, but the rest of the time I was in seclusion. That makes it more bearable for me. That if you miss being in contact with family and friends. We live a unique situation in history, in these times that we have had to live. It is evident that this pandemic disrupts personal and professional plans, but there is no other choice but to assume it.
What do you do to pass the time? The highlight or special is that I teach online with the fans. That makes those hours of roller more bearable. On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays at 7 in the afternoon I direct classes live. I usually do the series and the same specific work that I carried out to prepare the Tour, Giro and Vuelta. This activity keeps you in touch with people, who in turn can disconnect for a while from this problem that affects us.
The Tour is up in the air right now, do you think it should be held? The Tour is a mystery. We have seen that the Olympic Games have been postponed, and the Tour is in danger, nobody can anticipate what may happen. The organization makes its plans, but they should have a plan B, C and even D. It is not known what will happen. You have to be very careful, as there may be a regrowth. Maybe in France they can have it under control, but people of many nationalities go to the Tour “.
What do you think should be done? For greater security, it could be postponed, but the schedule is very tight and will be further adjusted if it is suspended. The Tour is the most important race and any other date could be allowed because people would go equally, that is the advantage that it has over other races. If there are suspensions, the situation would be chaotic for sponsors, teams, cyclists …
Can you imagine a Tour behind closed doors, without an audience? It is very difficult to imagine a Tour without an audience. Managing that closure in 200 kilometers or in five ports is almost impossible to control. Without an audience, the landscape would look the same on TV, but the audience’s warmth would be lacking.
Then it would be necessary to consider the economic and sports interests. The advertising returns come on TV, I do not see a big problem there, but the brokers want it to be celebrated. One interested in running would be Froome, because of fighting for the fifth Tour, and young people too, because they see that they are one more year old and what they want is to run. There are diverse interests, but we all agree that this pandemic hurts everyone and what matters most is health.
What do you think of the possibility of cutting the three weeks of competition on the big laps? I’m not attracted to that idea. A large race rewards the rider who assimilates efforts well, who has resilience, and the differences are usually marked by the third week of the race. It is the essence of the race, if not everything would be different, it would be something else.
How is your experience as a television commentator? Very good, I felt comfortable from the beginning, but every time I feel more comfortable and I try to improve. I really enjoy commenting and thus I kill the bug of active cycling, being in contact with the competition, the teams and the riders.