Volta a Catalunya 2018 route to have three Pyrenean stages
29 December 2017 03:14
Riders tackling the 2018 Volta a Catalunya will face a traditional combination of mid-race mountain stages in the Pyrenees and no time trial. In 2017, the seven-day stage race included - very unusually - a team time trial, as well as an exceptionally tough summit finish at Lo Port in southern Catalunya on stage 5. But in 2018, the organisers have opted for a much more traditional format, with the Volta likely to be decided after the race's second day in the Pyrenees on stage 4, which for the fifth year running favors climbers with a finish at La Molina ski resort.ADVERTISEMENT The one novelty included in the 2018 route is a stage to the remote town of Vielha in Catalunya's northwest, which last played host to a finish of the Volta back in 1993. That was an individual time trial won by Maurizio Fondriest. The 2018 Volta a Catalunya starts with a lumpy circuit stage to the Mediterranean resort of Calella for the seventh straight year. A hilly transition stage then follows, taking the race from another coastal town, Mataró - which starts stage 2 for the fifth year in succession - across central Catalunya to another oft-used host city, Valls. The mountain fireworks begin on stage 3, very probably the hardest day of the 2018 edition. Starting in Saint Cugat, close to Barcelona, the route climbs steadily to Vallter 2000, a 12-kilometre Pyrenean ascent close to the French border, averaging 7.4 percent. It was last used in 2014 with Tejay van Garderen taking the stage victory.
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