The 2006 Vuelta Espana will get underway this evening with a fast, flat 7.3 kilometre time trial running from the Estadio de Atletismo Cuidad de Málaga [City of Málaga Athletics Stadium] to the finish at the Paseo de los Curas/Paseo la Farola.
Relax-Gam will lead things off at 19.12 CEST, and will be followed at four minute intervals by each of the remaining 20 teams in the race. The start order is Relax-Gam, Lampre-Fondital, Davitamon-Lotto, Phonak Hearing Systems, Francaise des Jeux, Credit Agricole, T-Mobile, Bouygues Telecom, Liquigas, AG2R Prévoyance, Cofidis, Milram, Quick Step – Innergetic, Gerolsteiner, Saunier Duval – Prodir, Euskaltel – Euskadi, Discovery Channel, Astana, Illes Balears - Caisse d'Epargne, Team CSC and, finally, the Rabobank squad of defending champion Denis Menchov.
Given the high speeds expected from a team time trial and the very short duration of the test, large time gaps are unlikely. However it should be a spectacular start to the race.