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Alejandro Valverde returns to racing following hit-and-run

Valverde will race at the Vuelta a Castilla y León and the Vuelta a Burgos in early August ahead of the Vuelta a España.

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Alejandro Valverde returns to racing next week for the first time since his hit-and-run incident earlier this month.

The Team Movistar captain will race at the two-day Vuelta a Castilla y León in Spain on Wednesday and Thursday, and the Vuelta a Burgos in early August ahead of the Vuelta a España (August 18-September 11).

“We will analyze the Tour first and then we will think about the Vuelta,” Movistar manager Eusebio Unzué told MARCA. “Alejandro had a few problems, and there were some COVID cases within his family. His debut will probably be at Castilla y León next week.”

As a result, Unzué said Valverde couldn’t start the Villafranca-Ordiziako Klasika race this weekend as originally planned.

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Valverde, 42, was a victim of a hit-and-run in early July that threw the second half of his retirement season into question.

Valverde was not seriously injured in the conflict with a driver during a training ride, but was held overnight in the hospital for observation.

According to a witness on the scene, a car passed at full speed and close to Valverde’s training group. One of the three riders then reportedly yelled at the driver of the vehicle for his actions, and according to the witness, the driver stopped the car and then reversed into the cyclists. Valverde’s bike was apparently broken.

Valverde last raced at the La Route d’Occitanie-La Dépêche du Midi in June, when he was fourth overall.

Valverde’s calendar is set through the Vuelta, and he has not yet confirmed if he will race in the world championships in Australia or another late season race, or if the Vuelta will be his final curtain call.