Alberto Contador 6 seconds out of lead

Updated: February 19, 2011, 2:40 PM ET
Associated Press

TAVIRA, Portugal -- Competing in his first race since escaping a doping ban, Alberto Contador kept alive his chances for a third straight Tour of the Algarve title by remaining in second place overall after the race's next-to-last stage.

The Tour de France champion completed Saturday's fourth stage out of the top 10, but remains only six seconds behind leader Stephen Cummings of Sky.

"Tomorrow will be a difficult day," Contador said. "For me the important thing is to be focused, try to do my best and then see what the result is."

Andre Greipel of Omega Pharma won the 103-mile stage in 3 hours, 56 minutes, 55 seconds.

"Each day I'm better, but I'm not in form to fight for these first few race," Contador said. "Even so, I am happy with my current position and tomorrow I'll try to see what I get."

Contador, riding for his new team Saxo Bank, tested positive for the banned substance clenbuterol at last year's Tour. The Spanish cycling federation accepted his claim that he unintentionally ate contaminated meat and backtracked on a proposed one-year ban.


Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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