Vuelta a España: Wikis


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Vuelta a España
Tony Rominger.jpg
Tony Rominger in the Golden Jersey
Race details
Date September (since 1995)
Region Spain
English name Tour of Spain
Local name(s) Vuelta Ciclista a España (Spanish)
Nickname(s) The Vuelta
Discipline Road
Competition UCI ProTour
Type Grand Tour
Organiser Unipublic
Race director Víctor Cordero
First edition 1935
Editions 63 (as of 2008)
First winner Belgium Gustaaf Deloor
Most wins Switzerland Tony Rominger
Spain Roberto Heras
(3 wins)
Most recent Spain Alejandro Valverde

The Vuelta a España (English: Tour of Spain) is a three-week road bicycle racing stage race that is one of the three "Grand Tours" of Europe and part of the UCI World Ranking calendar.



The daily Informaciones with information about the Vuelta a España first edition

First held in 1935 and annually since 1955, the Vuelta runs for three weeks in a changing route across Spain. The inaugural event (1935) saw 50 entrants face a 3,411 km (2,119 mi.) course over only 14 stages, averaging over 240km (149 mi.) per stage. It was inspired by the success of the Tours in France and Italy, and the boost they brought to the circulations of their sponsoring newspapers (L'Auto and La Gazzetta dello Sport respectively); Juan Pujol of the daily Informaciones instigated the race to increase his circulation.

It was formerly held in the spring (usually late April), with a few editions held in june in the 1940s, but in 1995 the race moved to September to avoid the direct competition with the Giro d'Italia, held in May. As a result, the Vuelta is now often seen as an important preparation course for the World Championships which moved to October in the same year. A Vuelta had been organized in august/september in 1950.

The course typically includes between one to three time trials, and a fair amount of mountain stages. Since 1994, and often before (such as the inaugural edition), the finish of the Vuelta is traditionally the Spanish capital, Madrid, although Bilbao (in the 1950s) and San Sebastián (in the 1970s) were both recurring finish cities for a long period. Behind Madrid, three cities share second place for most Vuelta departures: Gijón, Bilbao and one time finish city Jerez de la Frontera. In 1997, the Vuelta started abroad for the first time, in Lisbon, Portugal. The first ever Vuelta-start outside of the Iberian Peninsula will take place in 2009, when Assen hosts the prologue of the 64st Vuelta.

In 1999, for the first time, the course crossed the Alto de El Angliru in Asturias, which climbs 1,573 meters (5,160 feet) over 12.9 km (8 mi.) with grades as steep as 23.6 percent (at Cueña les Cabres) making it one of the steepest in Europe. Credit for the discovery of this climb and its addition to the Vuelta goes to Miguel Prieto.

The overall leader wears the "Maillot amarillo" (Yellow Maillot) or "Jersey de Oro" (Golden jersey)—the Spanish counterpart to the yellow jersey of the Tour de France. Other jerseys honour the best climber (King of the Mountains) and the best sprinter (points competition) [awarded a blue with yellow fish jersey that is sponsored by Spain's fishing and marine industry]. Usually there are other cycling jerseys awarded, such as for points leaders in the "Metas Volantes" (intermediate sprints) and for the combination category (a point system that honours the best rider in combined totals for best overall, points and mountains classification).

The record for most wins is held jointly by Switzerland's Tony Rominger, who won three consecutive Vueltas in 1992, 1993 and 1994; and Roberto Heras of Spain, winner in 2000, 2003 and 2004. Heras also won the 2005 event, but was disqualified for a doping offense. Spaniards have dominated, winning 28 of the 63 runnings of the Vuelta. France, Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Colombia, Ireland (Sean Kelly in 1988), Russia and most recently Kazakhstan have also had first place finishers.

Winners of the Vuelta a España

Rider Team
1935 Belgium Gustaaf Deloor (BEL)
1936 Belgium Gustaaf Deloor (2) (BEL)
1937 No race
1938 No race
1939 No race
1940 No race
1941 Spain Julián Berrendero (ESP)
1942 Spain Julián Berrendero (2) (ESP) Informaciones
1943 No race
1944 No race
1945 Spain Delio Rodríguez (ESP)
1946 Spain Dalmacio Langarica (ESP) Galindo-Cicles Tabay
1947 Belgium Edouard Van Dyck (BEL) Alycon-Dunlop
1948 Spain Bernardo Ruiz (ESP) Peugeot-Dunlop
1949 No race
1950 Spain Emilio Rodríguez (ESP) Sangalhos
1951 No race
1952 No race
1953 No race
1954 No race
1955 France Jean Dotto (FRA) Vampire-d'Alessandro
1956 Italy Angelo Conterno (ITA) Bianchi-Pirelli
1957 Spain Jesus Loroño (ESP) Gamma
1958 France Jean Stablinski (FRA) Essor-Leroux
1959 Spain Antonio Suárez (ESP) Licor 43
1960 Belgium Franz De Mulder (BEL) Groene Leeuw
1961 Spain Angelino Soler (ESP) Faema
1962 Germany Rudi Altig (GER) St.Raphael-Helyett
1963 France Jacques Anquetil (FRA) St.Raphael-Gitane
1964 France Raymond Poulidor (FRA) Mercier-BP-Hutchinson
1965 Germany Rolf Wolfshohl (GER) Mercier-BP-Hutchinson
1966 Spain Francisco Gabica (ESP) Kas-Kaskol
1967 Netherlands Jan Janssen (NED) Pelforth-Sauvage-Lejeune
1968 Italy Felice Gimondi (ITA) Salvarani
1969 France Roger Pingeon (FRA) Peugeot-BP-Michelin
1970 Spain Luis Ocaña (ESP) Bic
1971 Belgium Ferdinand Bracke (BEL) Peugeot-BP-Michelin
1972 Spain José Manuel Fuente (ESP) Kas-Kaskol
Rider Team
1973 Belgium Eddy Merckx (BEL) Molteni
1974 Spain José Manuel Fuente (2) (ESP) Kas-Kaskol
1975 Spain Augustin Tamames (ESP) Super Ser
1976 Spain José Pesarrodona (ESP) Kas
1977 Belgium Freddy Maertens (BEL) Flandria-Velda-Latina
1978 France Bernard Hinault (FRA) Renault-Gitane-Campagnolo
1979 Netherlands Joop Zoetemelk (NED) Miko-Mercier-Vivagel
1980 Spain Faustino Ruperez (ESP) Zor-Vereco
1981 Italy Giovanni Battaglin (ITA) Inoxpran
1982 Spain Marino Lejarreta (ESP) Teka
1983 France Bernard Hinault (2) (FRA) Renault-Elf-Gitane
1984 France Éric Caritoux (FRA) Skil-Reydel-SEM-Mavic
1985 Spain Pedro Delgado (ESP) Orbea-Gin MG
1986 Spain Álvaro Pino (ESP) Zor - BH
1987 Colombia Luis Herrera (COL) Café de Colombia
1988 Republic of Ireland Seán Kelly (IRL) Kas-Mavic
1989 Spain Pedro Delgado (2) (ESP) Reynolds
1990 Italy Marco Giovannetti (ITA) Seur
1991 Spain Melchor Mauri (ESP) ONCE
1992 Switzerland Tony Rominger (SUI) Clas-Cajastur
1993 Switzerland Tony Rominger (2) (SUI) Clas-Cajastur
1994 Switzerland Tony Rominger (3) (SUI) Mapei-CLAS
1995 France Laurent Jalabert (FRA) ONCE
1996 Switzerland Alex Zülle (SUI) ONCE
1997 Switzerland Alex Zülle (2) (SUI) ONCE
1998 Spain Abraham Olano (ESP) Banesto
1999 Germany Jan Ullrich (GER) Team Telekom
2000 Spain Roberto Heras (ESP) Kelme-Costa Blanca
2001 Spain Ángel Casero (ESP) Festina
2002 Spain Aitor González (ESP) Kelme-Costa Blanca
2003 Spain Roberto Heras (2) (ESP) US Postal
2004 Spain Roberto Heras (3) (ESP) Liberty Seguros
2005 Russia Denis Menchov (RUS) Rabobank
2006 Kazakhstan Alexandre Vinokourov (KAZ) Astana
2007 Russia Denis Menchov (2) (RUS) Rabobank
2008 Spain Alberto Contador (ESP) Astana
2009 Spain Alejandro Valverde (ESP) Caisse d'Epargne

Vuelta victories by nation

Rank Country Wins Most wins Most recent winner
1  Spain 29 Roberto Heras (3) Alejandro Valverde (2009)
2  France 9 Bernard Hinault (2) Laurent Jalabert (1995)
3  Belgium 7 Gustaaf Deloor (2) Freddy Maertens (1977)
4  Switzerland 5 Tony Rominger (3) Alex Zülle (1997)
5  Italy 4 Angelo Conterno, Felice Gimondi, Giovanni Battaglin, Marco Giovannetti (1) Marco Giovannetti (1990)
6  Germany 3 Rudi Altig, Rolf Wolfshohl, Jan Ullrich (1) Jan Ullrich (1999)
7  Netherlands 2 Jan Janssen, Joop Zoetemelk (1) Joop Zoetemelk (1979)
 Russia 2 Denis Menchov (2) Denis Menchov (2007)
9  Colombia 1 Luis Herrera (1) Luis Herrera (1987)
 Ireland 1 Seán Kelly (1) Seán Kelly (1988)
 Kazakhstan 1 Alexandre Vinokourov (1) Alexandre Vinokourov (2006)

Vuelta a España stage wins

Rank Name Country Wins
1 Delio Rodríguez  Spain 39
2 Alessandro Petacchi  Italy 19
3 Laurent Jalabert  France 18
Rik Van Looy  Belgium 18
5 Seán Kelly  Ireland 16
6 Gerben Karstens  Netherlands 13
Freddy Maertens  Belgium 13
8 Tony Rominger  Switzerland 12
9 Domingo Perurena  Spain 11
Julián Berrendero  Spain 11
Augustin Tamames  Spain 11
12 Roberto Heras  Spain 10
13 Eddy Planckaert  Belgium 10



See also

External links

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