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Vuelta a Espana starts in the Netherlands, hops to Spain

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Usually by the time the Vuelta a Espana rolls around, I'm burned out on the Euro pro cycling scene.

The three-week race around Spain follows the Tour de France by 3 or 4 weeks. That's when all the Tour's post-race doping news is hitting its stride, and I'm fed up with the sport and the cheating cyclists.

Who knows whether this year will be different. The course for the Vuelta is certainly unusual, as it starts in the Dutch city of Assen and the bike race's first three days take place in the Netherlands. Then the peloton passes into Belgium before taking a day off to travel to Tarragona, Spain, to continue the race.

Mountains

The 2,025-mile bike race is highlighted by two individual time trials and a prologue. Observers say the course is difficult, as eight stages are marked as mountainous.


The hammer comes down on Stage 7, on Saturday, Sept. 8. That's a 19-mile individual time trial around Valencia. The next two days are marked by mountain-top finishes in Aitana and Xorret del Catí.

Other mountain stages are Stage 11 (Caravaca de la Cruz), Stage 12 (Alto de Velefique), Stage 13 (Sierra Nevada), Stage 14 (La Pandera), Stage 18 (Avila), and Stage 19 (La Granja. Real Fabrica de Cristales).

Sanchez confirmed

Among the leading Spanish cyclists Alberto Contador (winner in 2008), Carlos Sastre (Tour de France winner in 2008) and Sammy Sanchez (Olympic Gold Medalist in 2008), only Sanchez confirmed he would compete in the bike race, reported VeloNews. Contador said he'd give it a try if he hasn't run out of steam.

Contador is sitting out the Giro d'Italia, but is planning an all-out assault in the Tour de France for a second championship there.

 

1 – Assen – Assen (CRI – 4,5 km)
2 – Assen – Emmen (202 km)
3 – Zutphen – Venlo (184 km)
4 – Venlo – Lieja (223 km)
5 – Tarragona – Vinaroz (174 km)
6 – Xativa – Xativa (185,7 km)
7 – Valencia – Valencia (CRI – 30 km)


8 – Alzira – Alto de Aitana (206 km)
9 – Alcoi – Xorret de Cati (186 km)
10 – Alicante – Murcia (162 km)
11 – Murcia – Caravaca de la Cruz (191 km)
12 – Almeria – Alto de Velefique (174,5 km)
13 – Bejar – Alto de Sierra Nevada (175 km)
14 – Granada – La Pandera (157 km)
15 – Jaén – Córdoba (168 km)
16 – Córdoba – Puertollano (170,3 km)
17 – Ciudad Real – Talavera de la Reina (175 km)
18 – Talavera de la Reina – Avila (187 km)
19 – Avila – Segovia (188 km)
20 – Toledo – Toledo (CRI – 26 km)
21 – Rivas – Madrid (110 km)

More at VeloNews and CyclingNews.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.bikingbis.com/2008/12/18/vuelta-a-espana-starts-in-the-netherlands-hops-to-spain/

1 comment

  1. Christiana

    Pleasing you should think of somheting like that

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