|Chris Froome at the 2012 Vuelta|
|Contador on his way to winning La Vuelta in 2012|
By all accounts it has been a fascinating if not unexpected start to Le Tour de France. The two pre-race favourites, Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) both abandoned after crashing. Both understandably looked devastated after they realised their big goal of 2014 was over. For us race fans, it was a disappointing way for the Le Tour to go and now it looks like Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) will boss the race all the way to Paris.
However, what that means is that La Vuelta 2014 will now be the showpiece race of this year's UCI Pro Tour calendar as the duel in the mountains between these two stars of cycling will now take place. With Alejandro Valverde and the Giro Italia winner Nairo Quintana (both of Movistar) signalling their intent to race, this could be the best edition yet. Add in defending champ Chris Horner (Lampre-Merida), Purito Rodriguez (Katusha) and a fresh Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky), it couldn't look like a more interesting race.
We still have some spots left on our first week Grand Depart tour with VIP access to see the stars of cycling and ride the race route. Find out more here at our Vuelta bike tour.