Paris - Swiss star Fabian Cancellara said on Friday he will skip this year's Tour de France to focus on the world championships in Italy at the end of September.
"The Tour has given me beautiful things but I have other targets such as the world championships in Florence," the RadioShack-Leopard rider was quoted as saying on Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad's website, information confirmed by his team.
"I will not ride in the Tour de France. Instead I will do the tours of Austria, Poland and Spain to prepare for the world championships."
Cancellara, 32, has eight Tour de France stage victories to his name and has also spent time in the overall leader's yellow jersey.
"Spartacus" also won the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix events earlier this season.
Cancellara's team-mate Chris Horner will also miss cycling's most prestigious stage race, which starts on June 29 in Corsica, with the veteran American recovering from knee surgery.