efe-epaMalaga, Spain

British Team Sky rider Chris Froome, a four-time Tour de France champion, said Tuesday he was looking forward to competing in this week's Vuelta a Andalucia-Ruta del Sol and hoped the International Cycling Union (UCI) investigation of his positive test result at the Vuelta a España was completed soon.

"About to head to Ruta del Sol. I want to thank everyone for their support & patience over this difficult period. I am doing my utmost to ensure that things are resolved as speedily as possible. Can't wait to get this season started!!" Froome said in a Twitter post.

The Vuelta a Andalucia-Ruta del Sol, which starts on Wednesday, will be the 32-year-old Froome's first race of the season.

In December, Froome said he would provide any information requested by the UCI, cycling's world governing body, after double the permitted dosage of an asthma drug was found in a urine sample he provided during the Vuelta a España.

Under World Anti-Doping Agency rules, riders must restrict levels of Salbutamol, commonly found in inhalers used by asthmatics, to 1,000 nanograms per milliliter, but a test taken by the Team Sky cyclist toward the end of the 2017 Vuelta, which he went on to win, revealed almost double that concentration, meaning he has to explain the finding to the UCI, as per its anti-doping guidelines.

Froome said his asthma symptoms grew worse at the Vuelta and he increased his intake of Salbutamol on doctor's orders, all the while ensuring he restricted his dosage to permissible levels.