Liquigas’ Ivan Basso will begin his season at the Tour de San Luis, in Argentina in January, the defending Giro d’Italia champion said Wednesday.
In an interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport, Basso said that at nearly 33 years of age, he requires a little more time to prepare for a season.
Basso said that he began his 2010 campaign too late and found himself struggling in April’s Tour of Romandie after only a short period of preparation.
Instead, Basso will begin his 2011 season at the Tour de San Luis, which begins January 17 and ends on the 23rd.
“I plan on starting serious training in December and to build a base and then ramping up my intensity,” he told the paper. “At my age, it takes more time to get in shape. So I plan to start sooner just to avoid problems later on.”
Basso has already expressed doubts about seriously defending his Giro title in 2011, opting to focus his energies on July’s Tour de France. He won the Giro in 2006 and 2010. He was suspended from 2007 to 2009 for his involvement in Spain’s Operación Puerto doping case.