Joaquim Rodriguez to retire at the end of season

ANDORRA LA VIELLA, Andorra (AP) Spanish cyclist Joaquim Rodriguez has announced that he will retire at the end of this season, ending a 17-year career marked by podium finishes at all three Grands Tours.

Rodriguez, who is competing in the current Tour de France, made the announcement on Monday at a news conference organized by his Katusha team.

Rodriguez says ''I still enjoy this sport so much but I am 37 years old.''

He says he prefers to retire ''when I am still riding at a high level.''

Nicknamed ''Purito'' – or small cigar in Spanish – Rodriguez has enjoyed a strong start to the Tour. He was fifth overall after Sunday's toughest stage in the Pyrenees, just 37 seconds behind race leader Chris Froome.