Remco Evenepoel solos to victory at Stage 3 of the 2023 Vuelta. Image: Sirotti

Remco Evenepoel Leading Star-Studded La Vuelta España

After their success in the Giro and the Tour de France, Jumbo-Visma are aiming for a historic treble in La Vuelta – a clean sweep of 2023’s three Grand Tours.

Will Primoz Roglic rise to a fourth victory or is it Jonas Vingegaard’s turn to conquer the Spanish Grand Tour?

“We’re not racing against each other, we’re racing with each other”, the Dane said on Thursday in the lead up to La Vuelta which starts on Saturday. “We work super well together and the goal here is to win. I have great memories from La Vuelta. It was my first Grand Tour, in 2020, and it was an amazing debut for me, helping Primoz win.”

The Slovenian star, winner of every race he’s participated in this year (Tirreno, Volta a Catalunya, Giro and Vuelta a Burgos), adds another teammate in the mix.

“It could also be Sepp Kuss! La Vuelta is a fun race with always interesting finales and action from the start. We don’t have to wait for the last week. And if you look at the stats, if you want to win, you have to take Sepp with you!”

Kuss, the American climber, has raced every Grand Tour Jumbo-Visma have won since 2019 (La Vuelta 2019, 20 and 21; Tour 2022 and 23; Giro 2023).
Evenepoel: ‘Spanish Roads Are Always Brutal

Despite Jumbo Visma’s depth, talent and overall standing this year, defending Vuelta champion Remco Evenepoel is in brilliant form and raring to go.

“Spain is a country I kind of click with”, Evenepoel (Soudal Quick-Step) explained on Thursday in Barcelona. “I train a lot in Spain and I like the characteristics of the roads here. It’s always brutal and it invites racing.” 

Facing “the best Grand Tour riders of the last few months” a couple of weeks after he won the rainbow jersey in the time trial, Evenepoel aims for “stage wins and to be on the podium in Madrid.

“It’s difficult to say you want to win a Grand Tour, because so many things can happen at any time, like I’ve experienced already.”

“If I have three or four stage wins and I finish 12th on GC, it’s still a very good Vuelta. I’ve done recons at race pace, especially on the Angliru, so I know what’s coming.”

Ineos Grenadiers & Team UAE Emirates

The Ineos Grenadiers and UAE Team Emirates will be Jumbo-Visma and Soudal-Quickstep’s main rivals in the Giro and the Tour, came to Spain with impressive collectives to try and overthrow the bigger names.

The Grenadiers can count on two former Tour de France winners, Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal, as well as a powerhouse such as Filippo Ganna, who stated they have “one of the strongest teams here”.

“I’m ready to start and I’m very motivated,” Thomas said.

“The team time trial is a great goal for us. We have strong riders and we can do a great race.”

As for Bernal, 6th of La Vuelta 2021, he lines up with the ambition “to help the team do its best for G, who’s been on the podium of the last two Grand Tours he raced. And if something comes my way, it will be welcome.”

Jay Vine & UAE Emirates

Leading UAE Team Emirates alongside Juan Ayuso, Joao Almeida also wants to use numbers in the race: “Our team is similar to last year’s, we know each other. I have a good feeling with Juan, I trust my teammates 100% and I think we can fight for the podium.”

Aussie Jay Vine is also on that UAE Emirates squad and we will closely watching and regularly reporting on the rising Aussie star.

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