Quintana’s ‘dream’ Vuelta victory
Vuelta a Espana
News, results, commentary, and photos on the season’s final grand tour.
- Aru leaves France with yellow fever, takes aim at Vuelta's red jersey
- Froome confirms Vuelta bid, chasing rare grand tour double
- Vuelta phasing out podium girls for ‘elegant’ option
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 21
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 20
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 19
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 18
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 17
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 16
- 2017 Vuelta a España, stage 15
- Tour de meh: Three ways to make the TDF fun again
- Landa’s Tour regret: ‘I had legs to drop everyone’
- De Gendt upset over jury decision to award Barguil Tour’s super-combativity prize
- Froome says budget cap is bad idea, defends Sky media strategy
- Legally Speaking: One key insurance tip for cyclists
- Tour de France: Nate Brown’s special message for his dad
- How many Tours can Froome win?
- Bora boss: Challenging Sagan decision was ‘for all of cycling’
- Urán saves Tour runner-up spot in near-miss
- Roundtable: How good was 2017 Tour? Should cycling cap budgets?
- Technical FAQ: How big can I go with my Shimano rear derailleur?
- Suomy Gun Wind helmet
- Review: Giro Prolight Techlace Shoes
- Week in Tech: Mavic support continues, Silca pumps, and more
- Bontrager Velocis MIPS
- Week in Tech: Velocio Unity jersey, new Trek suspension, and more
- Technical FAQ: Aligning derailleur hangers, silk tubular memories
- First Ride: Cannondale’s aggressive endurance Synapse
- Pro Bike Gallery: Esteban Chaves's Scott Foil
- Pro Bike Gallery: Romain Bardet's Factor 02
- Carpenter and Dragoo win Cascade Classic despite final-stage snafu
- Stage 21: Froome claims fourth Tour; Groenewegen wins sprint
- Froome on brink of fourth Tour de France crown
- Van Vleuten escapes chasers in La Course pursuit
- Stage 19: Boasson Hagen escapes the breakaway
- Stage 18: Barguil king of Izoard; Froome flawless
- La Course: Annemiek van Vleuten climbs to victory atop Izoard
- Stage 17: Former ski-jumper Roglic solos to maiden Tour win
- Stage 16: Matthews wins photo finish; Martin loses time
- Stage 15: Mollema saves Trek-Segafredo's Tour
The Tour should take a hint from the Vuelta and change its route
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Vuelta roundtable: What did Quintana learn?
Five things we learned from the Vuelta
The season’s final grand tour will start in Nimes, France, on August 19 and end in Madrid on September 10. The 3,298-kilometer race includes five mountaintop finishes, including the fearsome Angliru, which comes on the race’s penultimate day.
Race director Javier Guillen told a press conference ahead of the 13th stage of this year’s event in Bilbao that the idea came to him when he attended a bullfight in the southern French city in 2012.
“I liked this city and I made contact with city officials in Nimes, with whom there was an instant rapport because they love Spanish culture. We’ve been working on this project for several years now,” said Guillen, who was accompanied by Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme.
It will be just the third time the race has started outside of Spain — it began in the Portuguese capital of Lisbon in 1997 and in Assen, Netherlands in 2009.
Racing begins with a team time trial on French soil — only the third time the Vuelta has started abroad. Stage 16 will also be a time trial, a mostly flat, 42-kilometer individual test in Navarra. With five flat stages in the first 14 days of the race, sprinters may be encouraged to stick around before stages 15-17, three mountain stages and the TT, which should be central to the battle for the overall.
“The third week will be even more important,” said Movistar manager Eusebio Unzué, who’s top rider Nairo Quintana won the 2016 Vuelta. “First up, there’s the Los Arcos to Logroño ITT, a special day for us as we will be racing home in the Navarra roads. Then, another two mountaintop finishes, and the always demanding Cantabria hills. And at the end, L’Angliru, a final, hellish chance for those who still want to conquer the race. I feel like it’s a Vuelta route even harder than in previous occasions, and I’m sure it’ll be spectacular.”
Four-time Tour de France champion Chris Froome (Sky) will be the outright favorite. Three times second, including last year’s infamous “Froomigal” stage, Froome intends to winning the Vuelta once and for all. On Monday, he confirmed he will race.
“I’ve come second three times now, and I’d love to win the Vuelta,” Froome said Monday. “The Vuelta is a race I love racing. It’s a vicious race, but it’s three weeks that I enjoy.”
Froome, 32, is also targeting cycling’s grand tour double that remains unconquered. A handful riders have won the Vuelta and Tour in the same season, but that was when the Vuelta was held in April. Since it moved to late summer, no one has won the Tour and then the Vuelta.
After seconds in 2011, 2014, and 2016, Froome wants to check the Spanish tour off his bucket list.
“To win the Tour and Vuelta in one year would be absolutely incredible,” he said. “I’ve got the opportunity now, and I’m certainly going to go for it.”
Team Sky tweaked his training schedule this year to have more miles in his legs to take on the Vuelta. He didn’t race as much this spring, in part to be stronger in the final week of the Tour. The Vuelta was very much part of that equation.
It won’t be a cakewalk for Froome, but a few big names are skipping the Vuelta. Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb), and defending champion Nairo Quintana and the injured Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) won’t be racing.
A few Tour riders might also start the Vuelta, including Fabio Aru (Astana) or Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale).
Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo), who beat back Froome in 2014, is also mulling a Vuelta start.
A number of top riders are expected to race the Vuelta. The 2010 winner Vincenzo Nibali is high on the list. He skipped the Tour after racing to third in the Giro d’Italia.
Other Giro riders expected to line up for Vuelta include Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha), Bob Jungels (Quick-Step), and Steve Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo).
Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe), third in the 2015 Vuelta, will also line up for the Vuelta after crashing out of the Tour.
Orica-Scott will go all-in with three GC threats: Esteban Chaves and the Yates twin brothers.
|1||08/19/2017||Nîmes to Nîmes||13.8km||DETAILS|
|2||08/20/2017||Nîmes to Gruissan||201km||DETAILS|
|3||08/21/2017||Prades Conflent Canigó to Andorra la Vella||158.5km||DETAILS|
|4||08/22/2017||Escaldes-Engordany to Tarragona||193km||DETAILS|
|5||08/23/2017||Benicàssim to Alcossebre||173.4km||DETAILS|
|6||08/24/2017||Vila-real to Sagunt||198km||DETAILS|
|7||08/25/2017||Llíria to Cuenca||205.2km||DETAILS|
|8||08/26/2017||Hellín to Xorret de Catí||184km||DETAILS|
|9||08/27/2017||Orihuela to Cumbre del Sol||176.3km||DETAILS|
|10||08/29/2017||Caravaca to ElPozo Alimentación||171km||DETAILS|
|11||08/30/2017||Lorca to Observatorio Astronómico de Calar Alto||188km||DETAILS|
|12||08/31/2017||Motril to Antequera||161.4km||DETAILS|
|13||09/01/2017||Coín to Tomares||197km||DETAILS|
|14||09/02/2017||Écija to Sierra de La Pandera||185.5km||DETAILS|
|15||09/03/2017||Alcalá la Real to Sierra Nevada||127km||DETAILS|
|16||09/05/2017||Circuito de Navarra to Logroño||42km||DETAILS|
|17||09/06/2017||Villadiego to Los Machucos||180km||DETAILS|
|18||09/07/2017||Suances to Santo Toribio de Liébana||168.5km||DETAILS|
|19||09/08/2017||Parque Natural de Redes to Gijón||153km||DETAILS|
|20||09/09/2017||Corvera de Asturias to Alto de l'Angliru||119.2km||DETAILS|
|21||09/10/2017||Arroyomolinos to Madrid||101.9km||DETAILS|
Results will be published once race is underway.
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The Vuelta is the best grand tour. Here's why:
2016 Vuelta a España, stage 20
2016 Vuelta a España, stage 18