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2012 Vuelta al Paîs Vasco looks to continue tradition of tough racing

2011 Tour of the Basque Country, stage 2. Andreas Kloden podium
Andreas Klöden atop the podium after stage 2 of the Vuelta al Paîs Vasco. He went on to win the race.

Considered one of Europe’s most challenging stage races, the Vuelta al Paîs Vasco will live up to its reputation in 2012 with an interesting route that includes two summit finales and a closing-day individual time trial.

Organizers for the Tour of the Basque Country announced its parcours for next season, with plenty of trademark climbs and narrow roads to assure tight racing right to the end.

The 52nd edition of the Basque tour, set for April 2-7, features summit finales in stages 3 and 4 that should go a long way toward crowning an overall victor. A closing-day individual time trial in Oñati in stage 6 will close any unsettled business in the GC.

RadioShack has dominated the past two editions of the race, with Chris Horner winning in 2010 and Andreas Klöden taking the honors this year, with Horner slotting into second.

Stages for the 2012 Tour of the Basque Country

  • Stage 1: Gueñes-Gueñes
  • Stage 2: Gueñes to Vitoria
  • Stage 3: Vitoria to Alto de Ibardin
  • Stage 4: Bera de Bidasoa to Santuario de Arrate
  • Stage 5: Eibar to Oñati
  • Stage 6: Oñati-Oñati (ITT)