August 1- 5, Burgos, Burgos, Road - 2.HC

2016 Vuelta a Burgos overview

The Vuelta a Burgos provides a perfect warm-up for the Vuelta a España, coming as it does little more than two weeks from the start of the third and final Grand Tour of the season. The race in northern Spain traditionally offers a taster of what is to come at the Vuelta.

Although last year's winner Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) is absent, there is still a sprinkling of stars on the start list, with Mikel Landa (Sky) – fresh from fourth place at the Tour de France and a starring role at the Clasica San Sebastian – expected to be to the fore. The Basque is joined in a strong Sky squad by Pete Kennaugh and Kenny Elissonde.

As ever, Movistar bring a solid outfit, and the race will offer a gauge of Marc Soler's form ahead of his Vuelta a España debut later this month. Dani Moreno and Carlos Barbero are part of his Movistar team.

Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) is another young talent building towards the Vuelta, while Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors) is building form as he returns from injury. Igor Anton and Omar Fraile are part of an aggressive Dimension Data line-up, while Irish squad Aqua Blue Sport are on hand to fine-tune their preparations for their Grand Tour debut at the Vuelta. Sergio Pardilla (Caja Rural-RGA) impressed a year ago, and should be to the fore again.

The opening two stages should offer chances for fast finishers, with the uphill finish at Alto del Castillo providing a fitting finale to the opening day. Stage 3 sees the first mountaintop finish, with the 8.5-kilometre haul to Piccon Blanco. After another punchy finale on stage 4, the race concludes with the traditional, tough summit finish at Lagunas De Neila.

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