2018 Vuelta a Espana to start in Malaga

Chris Froome exits the stage

Chris Froome exits the stage (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

The 2018 Vuelta a España will start in Málaga, in the South of Spain, the race organisers confirmed on Saturday. The race is set to start, once again, with a time trial, although it is not clear whether it will be an individual or team event.

First visited by the Vuelta in 1936, Málaga has been the host city for the start of the Spanish Grand Tour twice in the race’s history, both of them in this century.

In 2000 the Vuelta opened with an individual time trial, won by Alex Zülle, and in 2006 it hosted a team time trial, won by CSC with Carlos Sastre crossing the line first to become the first race leader. The most recent stage finish in Malaga was in 2015, when Peter Sagan won a bunch sprint.

No further details were revealed concerning the start, but local authorities did say in a press conference on Saturday that there will be at least one more stage in the Málaga province, with an uphill finish in the region likely to feature early on the Vuelta 2018 course.

The region of Málaga has been covered in numerous stages in recent years, with the 2015 start of the la Vuelta in the glitzy coastal resort of Marbella followed by a tricky uphill finish in El Caminito del Rey, won by Esteban Chaves.

The 2018 Vuelta will have a later than usual start, on Saturday August 25th, to avoid overlapping with the city’s annual Feria (festival). It will finish in Madrid, as usual, on September 16th.

The 2019 Vuelta a España is strongly rumoured to be starting in the south again, almost certainly in or near the city of Alicante.

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Alasdair Fotheringham

Alasdair Fotheringham has been reporting on cycling since 1991. He has covered every Tour de France since 1992 bar one, as well as numerous other bike races of all shapes and sizes, ranging from the Olympic Games in 2008 to the now sadly defunct Subida a Urkiola hill climb in Spain. As well as working for Cyclingnews, he has also written for The IndependentThe GuardianProCycling, The Express and Reuters.