Peter Sagan will begin his 2020 season in Argentina at the Vuelta a San Juan.
The stage race begins on January 26, which is also the Slovakian’s 30th birthday, with the race culminating with the final stage eight on February 2.
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The three-time world road race champion will face a lighter January schedule as he looks to perform better at the spring Classics before his debut appearance at the Giro d’Italia in May.
Sagan will then return to the Tour de France where he has won a record seven green jerseys, but is unlikely to travel to Tokyo for the Olympic Games, already ruling out the mountain bike event and the road race, which climbs the lower slopes of Mount Fuji, also being unsuited to his talents.
“It is a pleasure to return to Argentina and start the new season at the Vuelta a San Juan. It is a race that left me with beautiful memories in 2019,” Sagan said.
“I know the Vuelta a San Juan will once again have an excellent participation list and that the bar will be very high.”
Sagan’s best result at the 2019 race, his first appearance, was a second place on stage four behind Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates), having already raced the Santos Tour Down Under where he did take a stage victory.
Gaviria will take the start line in South America once again before focusing on his main season goal of victory at Milan – San Remo, with Deceuninck – Quick-Step’s Julian Alaphilippe and Remco Evenepoel also expected to race in Argentina.
Sagan has previously begun his season in Argentina, albeit at the Tour de San Luis in 2013, 2014 and 2016.
Last year a stomach virus blighted the sprinter’s early season, becoming ill at a training camp in Sierra Nevada in March and still going on to compete at Tirreno-Adriatico but then failing to even get a podium place at any of the spring Classics.
After the 2019 Tour, Sagan reduced his racing days as he needed rest before the Yorkshire Worlds, where he could only manage a fifth place finish. In 2020 he will be hoping to re-find the form that has seen him take many major honours in recent years.