• Joaquim Rodriguez descends on Stage 8 of the 2016 Tour de France. (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Joaquim Rodriguez has announced to the Tour de France press pack that he will end his professional career at the end of this year.
Cycling Central

12 Jul 2016 - 6:55 AM 

The Katusha rider told assembled press that 2016 would be his last season as a professional rider on the Tour's  first rest day  in Andorra.

"I still enjoy this sport so much but I'm 37 years old," said Rodriguez.

'Purito' has a glittering palmares, with five grand tour podium finishes to his name - three on the Vuelta, one of the Giro d'Italia and one on the Tour de France, as well as stage wins in all three races. He has also taken victories in shorter stage races such as the Tour of Catalunya and the Tour of the Basque Country.

He has finished at the top of the world rankings three times, has won the one-day Giro di Lombardia Monument twice, has been Spanish national champion and has also won Flèche Wallonne.

However, he's not done with the Tour de France yet, as Purito is currently fifth overall after the Pyrenees.

"I will give my maximum like I did my whole career," he said. "I would be happy to finish my Tour career in top ten, but of course I still dream of another overall podium in Paris. The support I got yesterday on the Pyrenees roads helps me to go on till my last day in cycling."

Rodriguez suggested he would still ride the Olympic road race in Rio and the Vuelta a Espana, but seemed uncertain what his last race would be.