There will be a new event on the women’s cycling calendar in 2018 after the organisers of the Volta a Catalunya announced that they will hold a one-day women’s race on the same day as a the final stage of the men’s race.
The one-day race will take place ahead of the concluding stage of the men’s event, which is seven days in length, using the same famous Montjuïc circuit in the heart of Barcelona.
More information about the race, which will take place on March 25, will be announced in the coming weeks, with organisers saying that the riders will face “several laps” of the hilly seven-kilometre circuit, which then men cover usually cover eight times at the end of the race.
Volta a Catalunya organisers partnered with ASO during last year’s race, and say that they were inspired by events such as La Course and the Madrid Challenge – both owned by ASO – in creating the new women’s race.
“”We want to bet on women’s sport and with this new test women’s teams will have a major challenge to highlight in the Tour of Catalonia. We look forward to seeing a good spectacle in this first edition and to grow over the years,” said Rubèn Peris, general director of the Volta a Catalunya.
The Volta a Catalunya is a major event on the men’s WorldTour calendar, with a history stretching back to 1911 and recent winners including Nairo Quintana, Richie Porte, Alejandro Valverde, and Dan Martin.
The 2018 edition will take consist of seven stages between March 19 and 25, and will again be a WorldTour event. However it seems unlikely that the women’s event will also find a place on the WorldTour calendar given that it has been announced just two months before it is due to take place.