Vuelta a Espana is one of the three biggest races of professional road cycling a.k.a. the Grand Tours. It’s the final Grand Tour of the year, usually held in August/September. The 2022 race is no exception – it starts on Friday, August 19, and ends on Sunday, September 11.
The 2022 Vuelta a Espana departs from Utrecht in the Netherlands, where a total of 184 cyclists will start their 2,038-mile journey. As its name suggests, the biggest portion of the race is taking place in Spain, with the country’s capital Madrid being the location of La Vuelta’s finish line.
Which rider will be the one to pass the finish line before anyone else? That’s the question we will try to answer in our 2022 Vuelta a Espana preview.
2022 La Vuelta Odds
|Enric Mas Nicolau||+2000|
|Miguel Angel Lopez||+2000|
*Odds taken from FanDuel on August 18.
Vuelta a Espana Schedule
- Dates: Friday, August 19 – Sunday, September 11
- Location: Utrecht, Netherlands (start) – Madrid, Spain (finish)
- How to Watch: Peacock/Olympic Channel
Online Sportsbooks Favor Primoz Roglic
Just a couple of weeks ago, Primoz Roglic wasn’t even one of the available betting options in online sportsbooks. The reason was that it wasn’t sure whether he was going to compete at La Vuelta after suffering an injury at the Tour de France in July.
What happened there was that he crashed his bike in Stage 5 of the race, dislocating his shoulder as a result of it. The Slovenian rider put the shoulder back where it belongs and continued racing. His team Jumbo-Visma, however, decided to pull him out of the race in Stage 15 so that he’d have enough time to prepare for his favorite race.
And La Vuelta really is Roglic’s favorite event. He’s the reigning champ who’s won it each time in the past three years. If he wins it again, he’s going to equal the record of Roberto Heras who won four Vueltas at the turn of the century.
Other La Vuelta Contenders
Remco Evenepoel is seen as the second favorite to win the 2022 Vuelta a Espana, although his odds are significantly longer than those of Roglic. Still, the 22-year-old rider for the Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team mustn’t be underestimated.
Although he’s still without any success at Grand Tours (he’s only competed at 2021 Giro D’Italia so far), he did do well in several majors, monuments, and classics. For example, he won the Liège–Bastogne–Liège monument race earlier this year, as well as the Clásica de San Sebastián one-day race.
Another rider who’s been great this year is Jai Hindley, the winner of the 2022 Giro. Bora–Hansgrohe’s best cyclist has been working hard over the summer in order to prepare for his second La Vuelta adventure. The first one happened in 2018 when he finished in the #32 position.
Richard Carapaz Hoping for Another Podium Finish
In 2021, Richard Carapaz was one of the top favorites for the Vuelta a Espana title, a year after finishing second in the race. Unfortunately for the Ecuadorian rider, a shoulder injury ruined his plans.
Fast-forward to August 2022 and Ineos Grenadiers’ climbing specialist is ready to challenge the Red Jersey. He’s got the physique needed to win La Vuelta, not to mention that he simply loves cycling in Spain.
The evidence of this is that he’s the winner of the 2022 Volta a Catalunya, which, along with Vuelta a Espana and the Tour of the Basque Country is one of the three Spanish stage races on the UCI World Tour calendar.
2022 Vuelta a Espana Prediction
Primoz Roglic has had only a fortnight to train for the 2022 Vuelta a Espana but bookies still have faith in him. We too think he’s the most likely candidate to triumph, although we do feel as if a surprise might happen.
If it does, it could be Carapaz who makes it. We have faith in the Ecuadorian – even if he doesn’t win the race, we believe he’ll end up on the podium.
Pick: Richard Carapaz – Top 3 Finish