Nibali and Gaviria to begin 2018 season at Vuelta a San Juan

The organisers of the Vuelta a San Juan have revealed the teams and stages for the 2018 race, with Vincenzo Nibali again expected to lead Bahrain-Merida and Fernando Gaviria named as part of the of the Quick-Step Floors team for the early-season stage race in Argentina.

The Vuelta a San Juan will be held between January 21-28 and so offers a less-intense alternative to the WorldTour category Tour Down Under (Jan 16-21) and a warmer weather option to a European start to the season.

The race organisers have managed to attract the presence of seven WorldTour teams, five Professional Continental teams, seven Continental teams and seven national teams including Italy, Cuba, Colombia and Argentina.

The seven WorldTour team are Bora-Hansgrohe, Lotto Soudal, Movistar, Quick-Step Floors, Trek-Segafredo, UAE Team Emirates and Bahrain-Merida. The Professional Continental teams invited are Androni-Sidermec, the Israel Cycling Academy, Caja Rural, Wilier Triestina and UnitedHealthcare.

Race organisers named Jarlinson Pantano as leader of Trek-Segafredo, Darwin Atapuma will lead UAE Team Emirates and Rafal Majka will lead Bora-Hansgrohe. 

Gaviria won two stages at the Tour of San Juan in 2017, with Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) finishing as the overall winner.

The seven days of racing are divided by a rest day on Thursday January 25. Several stages suit the sprinters with a 15km time trial on stage 3 on the Avenida de Circunvalacion in San Juan. The fifth stage is likely to decide the overall classification with a finish at an altitude of 2565m at Alto Colorado. 

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