Alberto Contador, the three-time Tour de France winner, will ride in this year's Tour de France, despite an ongoing doping probe into his alleged use of clenbuterol, a banned substance.
Yes, I will go to the Tour de France, Contador said during the Marcha Alberto Contador, a cycling event in his name. It is the best race, where the best riders are.
Contador tested positive for trace amounts of clenbuterol during the 2010 Tour, but claimed that it came from consuming contaminated beef.
The Spaniard was subsequently cleared by his national cycling federation, but was appealed by UCI and WADA to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The appeal hearing is set for August 1, which occurs after the three-week Tour de France begins on July 2.
Contador's participation in this year's race sets up an epic re-match with Andy Schleck, the Luxembourg rider who finished second to Contador the past two years.
Contador moved to Schleck's team Saxo Bank managed by Bjarne Riis, when Schleck formed a new Luxembourg-based team Leopard-Trek.
Both Contador and Schleck proved last year that they were a cut above the competition in last year's Tour de France, with no other rider seriously in contention for the top spot.
Contador also won this year's Giro d'Italia showing that he is still in top form this year.
Other riders that may be in contention will include Dennis Menchov and Samuel Sanchez who finished third and fourth last year. A dark horse in this year's race may be American Chris Horner, who won this year's Tour of California over Levi Leipheimer and Schleck.
Horner, who rode for Lance Armstrong on Team RadioShack, will be a co-leader of the team and will have teammates working for him. Horner finished tenth last year as the top American, despite starting the race as a support rider.