• Three-time winner Alberto Contador was a guest of honour at the Vuelta a España 2018 launch. (Supplied)Source: Supplied
Vuelta a España organizers have revealed a 2018 route they hope will again see the race decided in the mountains.
Cycling Central

14 Jan 2018 - 8:26 AM  UPDATED 1 Aug 2018 - 10:41 AM

The three-week Vuelta, which will start from Malaga on 25 August, will feature nine summit finishes and less than 40km of time trialling and is set to attract some of the biggest names in the sport, including Australian Richie Porte (BMC), Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida), Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ), Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and Fabio Aru (UAE Team Emirates).

The riders will start with an eight-kilometre prologue in Malaga and the other solo effort against the clock will be over 30.7 km in Torrelavega at the beginning of the third week.

“We want the mountains to be key again to decide the Vuelta,” said race director Javier Guillen.

The race will feature summit finishes at Les Praeres in Asturias and at Balcon de Bizkaia in the Basque Country for the first time.

It also returns to Lagos de Covadonga in the Picos de Europa, where Colombian Nairo Quintana took the leader's red jersey in 2016 before holding it all the way to the end.

The overall winner may not be decided until the penultimate stage in Andorra before riders head to Madrid for the finish.

SBS will broadcast all stages of the 2018 Vuelta a España live.

Stages of the August 25- September 16 2018 Vuelta a España
Stage 1 Malaga – Malaga, 8km ITT
Stage 2 Marbella – Caminito del Rey, 163.9km
Stage 3 Mijas – Alhaurin de la Torre, 182.5km
Stage 4 Velez-Malaga – Alfacar, 162km
Stage 5 Granada – Roquetas de Mar, 188km
Stage 6 Huercal-Overa – San Javier, 153km
Stage 7 Puerto Lumbreras – Pozo Alcon, 182km
Stage 8 Linares – Almaden, 195.5km
Stage 9 Talavera de la Reina – La Covatilla, 195km
Rest day
Stage 10 Salamanca – Fermoselle, Bermillo de Sayago, 172.5km
Stage 11 Mombuey – Luintra, 208.8km
Stage 12 Mondonedo – Faro de Estaca de Bares, Manon, 177.5km
Stage 13 Candas – La Camperona, 175.5km
Stage 14 Cistierna – Nava, 167km
Stage 15 Ribera de Arriba – Lagos de Covadonga, 185.5km
Rest day
Stage 16 Santillana del Mar – Torrelavega, 32.7km ITT
Stage 17 Getxo – Balcon de Bizkaia, 166.4km
Stage 18 Ejea de los Caballeros – Lleida, 180.5 km
Stage 19 Lleida – Andorra (Naturlandia), 157km
Stage 20 Escaldes-Engordany (Andorra) – Col de la Gallina, 105.8km
Stage 21 Alcorcon – Madrid, 112km