Alejandro Valverde, overall victor of Spain’s oldest race in 2009 and winner of three stages in 2015, will defend Movistar Team’s hopes after Quintana’s success last season.
After missing out on Paris-Nice due to illness, Alejandro Valverde will finally be back into competition with the 97th Volta a Catalunya.
The Spaniard, winner of both the Vuelta a Murcia and the Vuelta a Andalucía in 2017, will have a strong, eight-man squad by his side, including local Marc Soler, Imanol Erviti, Andrey Amador, José Joaquín Rojas, Rubén Fernández, Jonathan Castroviejo and Nelson Oliveira.
The Catalan stagerace -which Valverde won in 2009-, will feature a route significantly different to previous editions, with a 41km TTT in Banyoles (Tuesday 21) and a second mountain-top finish in Lo Port / Tortosa (Friday 25) to add to the well-known La Molina ascent (Wednesday 23).
Lumpy routes towards Calella, Igualada or Reus and a traditional showdown in the Montjuïc mountain, in Barcelona, complete the week’s program.