Vuelta expected to return to Angliru in 2020

Reports suggest a return to the Spanish grand tour's hardest climb next year in what's shaping up to be another climber-friendly route

Media reports suggest the fearsome Angliru climb will be part of the 2020 Vuelta a España.

In what’s already looking like an explosive and difficult Vuelta route, the Spanish daily Marca reported that the Alto de l’Angliru, with ramps as steep as 24 percent, will return for the eighth time in Vuelta history, two decades after its debut in 1999. Alberto Contador won in 2017 in what was the last time the Spanish grand tour tackled the legendary climb in Spain’s Asturias region.

The official route will be unveiled next month on December 17 in Madrid. The opening three stages will be in the Netherlands, starting in Utrecht with a team time trial and two sprint stages before transferring to Spain. The race is expected to land in Spain’s Basque region, perhaps with a stage ending at the Alto de Arrate, a climb synonymous with the Tour of the Basque Country.

Other reports suggest the Vuelta will tackle the Col du Tourmalet in the Pyrénées, but steer clear of Andorra. The route could also tackle climbs at Aralar and Moncalvillo, Marca reported, both new climbs in northern Spain. The Vuelta could also include a climbing time trial ending atop the Mirador do Ézaro wall in Galicia.

The 75th Vuelta will start in the Netherlands on August 14 and end in Madrid on September 6.