The roads of Castilla y León, the first stop in an intense cycle of competitions
34th Vuelta a Castilla y León
From 26 to 28 April
Castilla y León is the largest Autonomous Community in Spain. Nine provinces make up a territory so varied and rich in all kinds of landscapes and orographies that by itself it could feed a fifteen-day stage tour, even three weeks. A very vast region, with a dense history behind it and possessing an enormous heritage in which one of the two plateaus of the Iberian Peninsula extends and in which four of its great mountain systems take root.
With immense possibilities, Castilla y León is a land of great enthusiasm for cycling, the birthplace of many great riders, which supports a multitude of events in all categories, which has hosted the World Cycling Championships and even had a stage race prior to the creation of the Vuelta Ciclista a España itself. But with its current nomenclature and approach, Castilla y León is a fairly recent stage race, born in 1985 and organised without interruption since 1991.
Castilla y León is a race that managed to negotiate the storm of the crisis by reducing the number of stages from the usual five to the three that have been held without interruption since 2012, three days of cycling that are usually structured around some cultural or onomastic ephemeris. The Madrid-born Alberto Contador, with three victories in his overall final (2007, 2008, 2010), is the rider with the most absolute successes of a record where he is accompanied, with two, the last winner Rubén Plaza (2013, 2018), Paco Mancebo (2000, 2003) and Alfonso Gutiérrez (1986, 1987).
The 2019 edition will be an edition overturned with the Camino de Santiago, whose Castilian-Leonese itinerary inspires the event. It does not have big mountain stages, but it does have leg-breaking terrain, also exposed to the wind and, from a much more sentimental prism, it arrives on the first day at the town where the team achieved one of its great victories in 2018. Castrojeriz, then the finish line in the Vuelta a Burgos, and with the success of Matteo Moschetti mediante, is a place of fondest memory for the continental structure of the Foundation.
For the Kometa Cycling Team, which faces the first of several consecutive weeks of competition, will be the first participation in this race after a first year of life where, at this time, competed in Breton lands. Michele Gazzoli returns to the competition in the colours of the Kometa Cycling Team after the fracture he suffered during the Tour of Antalya and slowed down his dynamic in the mass arrivals. The Italian is going to the Castilian-Leon roads with a very dedicated team to protect him and prepare the arrivals.
In this context Stefano Oldani, more versatile, and Samuele Rubino, a pure climber, will have more freedom. Juan Camacho, José Antonio García, Antonio Puppio and Daniel Viegas complete their praetorian guard. “I feel very well, I have been facing a concentration in height in Passo Maniva to better prepare the next races and the great block of competitions that is to come. I feel good, I’m feeling great and I’m looking forward to competing again”, says Gazzoli.
26 April: Belorado-Castrojeriz (181 km).
27 April: Frómista-Villada (170.3 km).
28 April: León-Villafranca del Bierzo (151.8 km).
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)