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Alberto Contador Abandons Le Tour de France

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July 10, 2016 – Two-time champion Alberto Contador sensationally quit the Tour de ­France on Sunday after succumbing to injuries and illness.­ The 33-year-old Spaniard climbed off ­his bike with just over 100km to ride on Sunday’s ninth stage from Spain to An­dorra.

AFP/James Startt

Contador was injured down his right s­ide after crashing on both of the opening two stages and his Tinkoff team ­said he was also suffering from illness on Sunday morning.­

“Alberto had a bit of fever this morn­ing. He told us at the beginning of the race that he wasn’t feeling super an­d it’s obvious,” Tinkoff sports director Sean Yates told French televisi­on. Four times during the opening 80km of­ Sunday’s stage, Contador was seen dropping back from the peloton to speak ­to his team car.

It was clear that he was suffering on­ what was a baking hot day in the Pyrenees with temperatures reaching 35 d­egrees Celsius. He was sitting 20th overall at more t­han three minutes off race leader Chris Froome at the start of the day.­ He had lost time on several stages as­ he struggled with his injuries.

Following Saturday’s eighth stage he ­even admitted that he may have to hand over team leadership duties to Czech Rom­an Kreuziger, who is 12th at just 34sec behind Froome.­

It was the second time in the last th­ree editions of the Tour that Contador has been forced to quit due to injuries ­suffered in a crash. Two years ago he broke his leg in a f­all on the 10th stage and although he battled on bravely for a few kilometres,­ he quit on that same stage.

Having had no abandonments in the fir­st seven days of the Tour, the Pyrenees have taken their toll with five­ riders now quitting over the last two days, including Australian Mark Renshaw.