23/08 - Stage 1 - Jerez de la Frontera - 12.6 km
Since 2010, the Vuelta has started out with a short team time trial. This year is no exception. The time gaps won’t be very big today but with such a strong field, every second counts.
Starting out on Plaza del Mamelón, the first 1500 meters take place on narrow urban roads with multiple parts of city paves in the center of Jerez de la Frontera. After crossing under the railroad tracks, it’s time to start getting into bigger gears. The following stretch on Avenida de la Universidad is the first time the big engines can open up. However, numerous roundabouts will make for a very technical stage. In fact, the riders have to overcome more than 20 roundabouts during the just 12.6 km on the bike.
Except for the tricky and narrow first part of the stage, there aren’t really any sharp corners on this route. The many roundabouts are definitely the biggest struggle today. It means that even though this is a very technical route, there are still some high speed stretches for the big powerhouses to take advantage of. Given we are in the south of Spain, this is an evening show. To avoid extreme temperatures, the first team starts at 19:04 local time. Still, this doesn’t mean the temperatures will drop much under 30°C. Some riders may struggle in the heat at this late hour.
In case you haven't read the big overall preview of this year's Vuelta a España yet, simply click here.