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The Angliru and the Tourmalet will play starring roles for the 2023 Vuelta a España.
Officials confirmed the 21-stage route for the season’s final grand tour, running from August 26 to September 17, starting in Barcelona and ending in Madrid.
Along the way, the route features plenty of vertical in trademark Vuelta style. There will be 10 mountaintop finales, with five of those being raced for the first time in Vuelta history. The Angliru is back, with stops in Andorra and France with the Tourmalet at the end of week 2 along the way.
“Mountains are a part of La Vuelta’s DNA and will make the 2023 edition very exciting yet again,” said Vuelta director Javier Guillén. “The Tourmalet will be a landmark in the history of our race and will be this year’s great colossus, along with the Angliru.
“We continue searching for new summits in order to showcase great cycling and it is in this search that we discovered new finales at Larra-Belagua, Cruz de Linares, and Bejes, and such mountain passes as Larrau and Issarbe.”
The Vuelta’s 21 stages will include 12 new departure cities, and eight new finish lines. In addition to the 10 summit finales, the race features two time trials, seven mountains stages, six mid-mountain stages, four flat stages, and two flat stages with high-altitude finales.
Barcelona will play host for the Vuelta’s “big start” for just the second time in race history. The city will host an urban team time trial as its first stage and the second stage will depart from Mataró and return to Barcelona, in front of the Lluís Companys Olympic Stadium.
The race then heads toward Andorra, with a new summit finale at Arinsal. The route then dips south toward Valencia. The region will host a stage to the Observatorio Astrofísico de Javalambre and a return to the fearsome Xorret de Catí.
Week 2 opens with a 25km individual time trial, before driving east via Zaragoza and then north into France. A Tour de France-style stage climbs the Aubisque and Tourmalet, and then returns to Spain via climbs at Issarbe, Larrau and Larra-Belagua ahead of the second rest day.
A new summit finale at Bejes will be a prelude to L’Angliru and a new finale in Cruz de Linares in week 3. The route then drives south toward Madrid featuring a wild, classics-style penultimate stage, and the final sprint at Cibeles.