Yet another Spanish race has been cancelled. The Diario de Navarra newspaper reported on Thursday that the GP Miguel Indurain organisers, the CC Estella cycling club, will not be able to hold their race this year.
The newspaper says that a lack of sponsorship funds and a subsidy promised the local government that has yet to materialize have combined to sink the race.
First run in 1951 and re-named GP Miguel Indurain in 1999, in recent years the one-day race was used as a curtain-raiser on a week of cycling in the Basque Country, preceding the Vuelta al País Vasco and the GP Amorebieta on the following Sunday. It has had a host of top name winners including Alex Zülle, Miguel Indurain, Pedro Delgado, Samuel Sanchez and Joaquim Rodriguez. Won last year by Simon Spilak, and currently classified 1.1 in the UCI calendar, the next edition was due to take place on April 5th.
The list of Spanish races that have either been shortened or cancelled in recent years continues to grow at a alarming rate. In the last decade the Tour of Valencia, Tour of Aragon, Tour of Galicia, Subida a Montjuic and Setmana Catalana have all disappeared and Mallorca and Andalusia have been cut back by a day.
Following the cancellation of the GP Miguel Indurain, there are now just eight one day races in Spain: the Clasica San Sebastian, GP Ordizia, GP Getxo, GP Amorebieta, the Vuelta a Murcia - previously a five day stage race - the Vuelta a la Rioja - previously three days long - the Vuelta a Madrid, and the GP Almeria. Many of the stage races, including the WorldTour Volta a Catalunya and Vuelta al País Vasco events, have experienced economic difficulties in the last few years because of the Spanish sponsorship crisis.
Alasdair Fotheringham has been reporting on cycling since 1991. He has covered every Tour de France since 1992 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. Apart from working for Cyclingnews.com, he is also the cycling correspondent for The Independent and The Independent on Sunday.
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