Mikel Landa aiming for two Grand Tours in 2021

Team Bahrain rider Spains Mikel Landa rides during the 18th stage of the 107th edition of the Tour de France cycling race 168 km between Meribel and La Roche sur Foron on September 17 2020 Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARD AFP Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARDAFP via Getty Images
Mikel Landa in action at the 2020 Tour de France (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious) will once again target the Tour de France in 2021, aiming for the podium after finishing fourth at the 2020 race. He'll also race another Grand Tour, though which one has yet to be decided.

The Spaniard took part in his fifth Tour this year, taking the chance to lead a team for the first time having moved from Movistar to Bahrain McLaren. He repeated his 2017 result of fourth overall, finishing the race 5:58 down on winner Tadej Pogačar.

"The Tour is the big goal of the year, that is clear," a member of Landa's entourage told Basque newspaper Deia. "But it's true that Mikel wants to race another Grand Tour.

"This year, the circumstances did not fit, as we all know, but if you go back to a normal calendar, he wants to do two Grand Tours. We don't know if it will be the Giro d'Italia or the Vuelta a España that will join the Tour."

Landa, who turns 31 on Sunday, has raced the Giro five times and the Vuelta on four occasions, his best results coming in Italy with a third-place finish behind Alberto Contador and then-teammate Fabio Aru in 2015.

His Grand Tour stage wins have come at both races, all in the mountains, with wins at Madonna di Campiglio, Aprica and Piancavallo in Italy, and victory at Cortals d'Encamp at the 2015 Vuelta. He'll wait for the route announcements before deciding which race to revisit, though.

"The most normal thing is that he will go to the race in which the route is most suitable for him," said the source. "But he does have the idea of competing in two Grand Tours. It's something he likes, and his body recovers well between two such efforts. He digests it well.

"Physically, he has spent very little [in 2020], but psychologically it has been a hard year. He was left with the desire for another race."

Landa, who on Thursday will head to the Canary Islands to train, will also target his home race, Itzulia, early in the season. The race wasn't held in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic but returns to its usual mid-April calendar spot in 2021. Landa has raced there six time previously, taking two stage wins over the years, as well as finishing second in 2018. 

"This is one of Mikel's objectives. He will go out with the idea of competing for the victory. He wants to be good in his home race."

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