Galician town of Pontevedra set to host Vuelta 2013 start?

Pontevedra is strongly rumoured to be set to be the start of the 2013 Vuelta a España, with an announcement confirming the news expected perhaps as soon as the end of this week before the race leaves Galicia, local media say.

The Galician tourist resort and fishing town has long since been a regular feature of the Vuelta, hosting its first start back in 1965 and has had three finishes, but has never been the Grand Depart for Spain's biggest bike race.

Little has been revealed yet about the 2013 Vuelta route, except that a stage in Pamplona, where the race began this year, is said to be very likely. Since 2010, the race has kicked off with a team time trial - which, if Wednesday's Stage 11 time trial is anything to go by, would be a very technical, hilly affair.

After a long gap since the early 1990s when the Vuelta barely visited Galicia, Spain's most north-westerly region has featured heavily both in 2011 and in 2012, with five stages alone this year.

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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.