The 36-year-old German led the team this year in the absence of Petacchi at the Tour de France and the Vuelta a Espana, though hinted that it would be "Ale jet" who would be the main sprinter in 2007.
"We want to make our sprinter train for Alessandro Petacchi," Zabel told ZDF. "We want to continue where we were in the Vuelta. That is surely our main goal. But we also want to do well in the grands tours as well as the spring classics."
Zabel also welcomed the decision by Tour de France organisers to have the alpine stages before the race hits the Pyrenees, and to start the race in London.
Petacchi gains revenge
"Personally, I prefer to ride in a clockwise direction. I don't know why." Zabel mused.
"I have already been with the Tour in Great Britain, my first Tour in 1994. That was a great experience. I'm really looking forward to it next year. It will be fun for me."
The six-time green jersey winner earmarked Astana's Alexandre Vinokourov as a possible challenger for victory in the overall classification, figuring "after he got shut out of the Tour this year, he'll be highly motivated. He showed at the Vuelta that he has the potential to win a grand tour."
Pro Tour 2007
Petacchi seals victory
Wins for Petacchi, Karpets