An excursion into the Netherlands awaits the peloton as they take on this year’s Vuelta a España, with Team DSM revealing an eight-rider strong roster that will line-up in Utrecht to take on an action-packed 21 days of racing at La Vuelta as the curtain on the Grand Tour calendar draws to a close.
Getting under way, a predominantly flat route lays ahead of the bunch in the Netherlands, starting with a fast 23-kilometre time trial through the streets of Utrecht before two days which should see the sprinters do battle for stage honours; unless the infamous Dutch wind has a role to play. Heading back to the north of Spain after their travel day, a succession of challenging and hilly terrain lends itself to exciting and attacking racing, with several tough hilltop and mountain finishes; including the brutally steep Nava finale that returns after its inclusion in 2018. Following the first rest day a long individual effort against the clock will put the racing rhythm back into the riders’ legs before they take on some days that could suit the attackers or sprinters. A handful of mountain-top finishes will also shake things up while the second week concludes at altitude with the bunch reaching 2500 metres above sea level atop Sierra Nevada. Racing concludes with a mixed bag of terrain in the final week, where every type of rider will find a route that suits them and should result in some fierce battles for the breakaway.
Aiming to build on their good recent form and momentum due to well thought-out and planned training, alongside targeted racing and altitude camps, Team DSM’s Vuelta a España squad are ready to take their jersey around the Netherlands and Spain as they race offensively, whilst keeping an eye on the GC throughout the three weeks.
Jonas Iversby Hvideberg