A profile of Alberto Contador as our build-up continues to the Tour de France coming to west Essex and East London

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: One of the favourites for 'Le Tour': Alberto Contador. Picture: Action Images One of the favourites for 'Le Tour': Alberto Contador. Picture: Action Images

Alberto Contador is many people’s favourite to challenge Britain’s Chris Froome at 'Le Tour' this year, despite a number of stages favouring the 2013 winner.

The 31-year-old is looking to win his third maillot jaune after a season that has not seen him finish outside the top two in general classification, including tour victories at Tirreno-Adriatico, in Italy, and Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco, in Spain.

Contador is a two-time winner of the Tour de France and is one of only five people to have completed the 'Grand Tour' grand slam with victories at the Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a Espana in 2008, before adding a second Vuelta in 2012.

The Spaniard started his professional career in 2003 with ONCE-Eroski, but he did not win his first major tour, Paris-Nice, until signing for the Discovery Channel team in 2007.

Contador won a third Tour de France in 2010 and a second Giro d’Italia in 2011, but was stripped of the titles after being found guilty of accidental ingestion of the banned doping product, Clenbuterol.

He is the current number one in the world and rides for Danish-based Tinkoff-Saxo.

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