The Vuelta a España is once again headed to unfamiliar territory as the 2019 route will include five summit finishes that are new to the race. What’s not so new, however, is that the Spanish tour will be a climber’s delight.
The first week of the 2019 Vuelta looks absolutely punishing. There’s an old saying in bike racing; a tour can’t be won in the first week, but it can be lost. La Vuelta looks determined to prove that saying outdated in August of the coming year.
The first week kicks off with a team time trial and ends with a short and difficult 96.6-kilometer ride across Andorra. Andorra was home to the final weekend of the 2018 edition and is where Simon Yates solidified his Vuelta win. It will be a day to watch thanks to five categorized climbs in just 60 miles of riding. There is even a four-kilometer off-road section preceding the final ascent.
The race crosses the border to France for a 36-kilometer individual time trial on stage 10. After an intense first week, the second week is comprised mostly of rolling hills with a mix of flat and mountain stages.
The final week is pretty relaxed compared to the typical La Vuelta route. The 2019 La Vuelta runs from August 24 to September 15.