Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) will line-up to race the 2019 Vuelta a San Juan (January 27 to February 3). The former world champion says he will use the race to test his legs but that he is also aiming for a stage win.
"It will be a good opportunity to test my legs and, why not, to try to win at least one stage," Sagan said in a press release from the race organisers.
Sagan will start his season at the Tour Down Under held from January 15-20 in Australia. He will then travel to South American and land in Argentina on January 26, a day ahead of the Vuelta a San Juan's scheduled start.
It will be Sagan's debut at the Vuelta a San Juan, however, he has participated in three editions of the Tour de San Luis (2013, 2014 and 2016), although he did not secure a stage win in that stage race.
"I remember with pleasure the good climate and the affection of the Argentines," Sagan said.
He said that competing in the Vuelta a San Juan, given its early-season position on the calendar, made it a good event to gain form ahead of the European season.
"It's an intelligent solution for a race at the start of the season when many riders are still gaining form.
"In 2019, for the first time I will compete in the Vuelta a San Juan and I am curious to discover the province, the landscapes, the route and the formula they use. I see that in a week of racing they even included a rest day."
Sagan won the World Championships for three consecutive seasons but lost the rainbow jersey to Alejandro Valverde in Innsbruck in September. He has a realistic chance of winning the title for a fourth time at the UCI Road World Championships in Yorkshire next September.
In Argentina, he will face competition from other notable sprinters such as Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) and Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates).
Upon his return to Europe, Sagan will focus on the Spring Classics; Milan-San Remo, Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix, along with Amstel Gold Race and possibly Liège-Bastogne-Liège.