Ivan Basso arrived at the Vuelta confident of a strong performance. In his comeback year the Italian has already finished fifth overall at the Giro d'Italia and has done enough to be marked down by most as a contender in Spain throughout September.
Good form, a strong Liquigas team and renewed motivation could be enough to see Basso challenge for his second Grand Tour victory, and his first since the 2006 Giro. In the early days of this year's race, a key rival, Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne), said the Italian would be tough to beat. Follow Basso's progress in pictures here.
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