VUELTA A ESPAÑA: THE SPANISH CYCLING RACE IN A NUTSHELL

MARTIN SKUHRAVÝ - 08/17/2021

This year marks the 76th edition of the prestigious cycling race: La Vuelta a España. It is a three-week race featuring 21 challenging stages. Along with the Tour de France and Giro D`Italia, La Vuelta de España counts among the most popular cycling races. What is the route of the race, who won it in the past and what is behind its origin?

Check out our infographic and scroll down to read more about La Vuelta!

 

Vuelta a España


La Vuelta a España is a multi-stage cycling race which takes place mostly within Spain but also in other countries. The race consists of 21 challenging stages that cyclists take on during August and September every year.

The star is born


The very first edition of La Vuelta a España was held in 1935. It was inspired by the success of two traditional races: The Tour de France and the Giro d`Italia. The founder of the race and, at the same time, the owner of the newspaper "Informaciones" found out that both races had increased the sales of the newspaper of their organizers, so he tried to do the same. Thus, in 1935, 50 brave men took their places at the start and had to face an incredible distance of 2119 kilometers. The champion of the first year was the Belgian rider Gustaaf Deloor.

In 1936, the civil war broke out in Spain and the race was in jeopardy at that time. Nevertheless, the second race was held in the end, with Deloor winning for the second time. However, the civil war went in an unfavorable direction and the third edition was not held until 1941. Today La Vuelta is inseparably linked to the world of sport and together with the Tour de France and the Giro d`Italia it is one of the most popular cycling races in the world.

La Vuelta 2021


This year's Vuelta started on August 14th and finishes on September 6th, 2021. Spectators and cyclists alike will be able to enjoy it once again. The cyclists will cover a total of 3336 kilometers and will have to overcome dozens of challenging steep hills, this time only through Spain.

This year the race started in front of the cathedral in Burgos and finishes in Santiago de Compostela. What does the exact route look like?

 

Date

Stage

Km

Type

14/8

1. Burgos – Burgos

8 km

time trial

15/8

2. Caleruega – Burgos

169,5 km

flat 

16/8

3. Santo Domingo de Silos – Picón Blanco

203 km

flat

17/8

4. El Burgo de Osma – Molina de Aragón

163,6 km

flat 

18/8

5. Tarancón – Albacete

184,4 km

flat 

19/8

6. Requena – Cullera

159 km

flat 

20/8

7. Gandía – Balcón de Alicante

152 km

mountain

21/8

8. Santa Pola – La Manga del Mar Menor

163,3 km

flat

22/8

Puerto Lumbreras – Alto de Velefique

187,8 km

mountain

23/8

Day of rest

24/8

10. Roquetas del Mar – Rincón de la Victoria

190,2 km

mid-mountain

25/8

11. Antequera – Valdepeñas de Jaén

131,6 km

mid-mountain

26/8

12. Jaén – Córdoba

166,7 km

mid-mountain

27/8

13. Belmez – Villanueva de la Serena

197,2 km

flat

28/8

14. Don Benito – Pico Villuercas

159,7 km

mountain

29/8

15. Navalmoral de la Mata

193,4 km

mountain

30/8

Day of rest

31/8

16. Laredo – Santa Cruz

170,8 km

flat

1/9

17. Unquera – Lagos de Covadonga

181,6 km

mountain

2/9

18. Salas – Altu d`El Gamoniteiru

159,2 km

mountain

3/9

19. Tapia de Casariego – Monforte de Lemos

187,8 km

mid-mountain

4/9

20. Sanxenxo – Mos

173,6 km

mountain

5/9

Padrón – Santiago de Compostela

33,7 km

time trial

 

You can watch the race on Eurosport and GCN.

Jerseys of La Vuelta a España

La Vuelta has a total of four competitions as part of the race. These include the competition for the general classification, the points classification, the mountains classification and, last but not least, the classification for the young riders. The riders are differentiated by colored jerseys:

Red jersey: The time of each rider is measured at the finish line of each stage and the rider with the fastest time gets the red jersey. The rider with the fastest overall time at the end of the race becomes the champion of the Vuelta a España.
Green jersey: This jersey is worn by the rider with the highest score. The winner of each stage gets 100 points. The score is then reduced until the 15th rider to cross the finish line gets one point. Movistar rider Alejandro Valverde is one of the three riders who have won the green jersey.
Polka dot jersey: A jersey that cannot go unnoticed. This jersey is worn by the leader of the climbers' classification. Points in this category are awarded according to the climbs during the race: the more difficult the climb, the more points the first rider at the top will receive.
White jersey: Previously the white jersey was awarded to the rider with the best overall score in the general classification. This changed in 2019 and the white jersey now being awarded to the best young rider in the overall classification.

List of Vuelta a España winners

The winner of the 76th Vuelta a España is not yet known. However, you can see the list of the previous champions in the table below:

 

Vuelta

Year

Winner

Nationality

1

1935

Gustaaf Deloor

Belgium

2

1936

Gustaaf Deloor

Belgium

3

1941

Julián Berrendero

Spain

4

1942

Julián Berrendero

Spain

5

1945

Delio Rodríguez

Spain

6

1946

Dalmacio Langarica

Spain

7

1947

Édouard Van Dyck

Belgium

8

1948

Bernardo Ruiz

Spain

9

1950

Emilio Rodríguez

Spain

10

1955

Jean Dotto

France

11

1956

Angelo Conterno

Italy

12

1957

Jesús Loroño

Spain

13

1958

Jean Stablinski

France

14

1959

Antonio Suárez

Spain

15

1960

Franz De Mulder

Belgium

16

1961

Angelino Soler

Spain

17

1962

Rudi Altig

Germany

18

1963

Jacques Anquetil

France

19

1964

Raymond Poulidor

France

20

1965

Rolf Wolfshohl

Germany

21

1966

Francisco Gabica

Spain

22

1967

Jan Janssen

Netherlands

23

1968

Felice Gimondi

Italy

24

1969

Roger Pingeon

France

25

1970

Luis Ocaña

Spain

26

1971

Ferdinand Bracke

Belgium

27

1972

José Manuel Fuente

Spain

28

1973

Eddy Merckx

Belgium

29

1974

José Manuel Fuente

Spain

30

1975

Augustín Tamames

Spain

31

1976

José Pesarrodona

Spain

32

1977

Freddy Maertens

Belgium

33

1978

Bernard Hinault

France

34

1979

Joop Zoetemelk

Netherlands

35

1980

Faustino Rupérez

Spain

36

1981

Giovanni Battaglin

Italy

37

1982

Marino Lejarreta

Spain

38

1983

Bernard Hinault

France

39

1984

Éric Caritoux

France

40

1985

Pedro Delgado

Spain

41

1986

Álvaro Pino

Spain

42

1987

Luis Herrera

Colombia

43

1988

Sean Kelly

Ireland

44

1989

Pedro Delgado

Spain

45

1990

Marco Giovannetti

Italy

46

1991

Melchor Mauri

Spain

47

1992

Tony Rominger

Switzerland

48

1993

Tony Rominger

Switzerland

49

1994

Tony Rominger

Switzerland

50

1995

Laurent Jalabert

France

51

1996

Alex Zülle

Switzerland

52

1997

Alex Zülle

Switzerland

53

1998

Abraham Olano

Spain

54

1999

Jan Ullrich

Germany

55

2000

Roberto Heras

Spain

56

2001

Ángel Casero

Spain

57

2002

Aitor González

Spain

58

2003

Roberto Heras

Spain

59

2004

Roberto Heras

Spain

60

2005

Roberto Heras

Spain

61

2006

Alex Vinokurov

Kazakhstan

62

2007

Denís Menshov

Russia

63

2008

Alberto Contador

Spain

64

2009

Alejandro Valverde

Spain

65

2010

Vincenzo Nibali

Italy

66

2011

Chris Froome

UK

67

2012

Alberto Contador

Spain

68

2013

Chris Horner

USA

69

2014

Alberto Contador

Spain

70

2015

Fabio Aru

Italy

71

2016

Nairo Quintana

Colombia

72

2017

Chris Froome

UK

73

2018

Simon Yates

UK

74

2019

Primož Roglič

Slovenia

75

2020

Primož Roglič

Slovenia

 

 

 

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COMMENTS

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  • ceejay - 08/18/2021
    Slight error in your Stage table. Stage 3, Picón Blanco is certainly not flat.

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