Tadej Pogačar opts out of Vuelta a España 2021 as he focuses on one-day races

The Tour de France winner is looking ahead to the GP Plouay in Brittany instead

Tadej Pogačar
(Image credit: Getty)

Tadej Pogačar has announced that he will not be riding his second Grand Tour of the season at the Vuelta a España 2021.

The back-to-back Tour de France winner said in a video that he will instead be focusing on the Bretagne race GP Plouay before the European and World Championships, and the Italian Classics to close out the season.

UAE Team Emirates decided that it was best for recovery that Pogačar should skip this year's Vuelta and focus on one-day events instead.

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In the video, he said: "Hello, I'm back on the bike after a few amazing weeks. I had a little rest after Tokyo [2020 Olympic Games].

"With the team, we decided not to ride the Vuelta unfortunately. But I will be back in Spain at the Vuelta soon. 

"My next goal is [GP] Plouay, European Championships, World Championships and then the Italian Classics so, it's going to still be a pretty interesting season. See you soon."

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This season has been a dominant one for Pogačar, taking 12 wins in all, including stage wins and overall titles over 12 races. Along with that, he's got a podium in almost all other races he's ridden including bronze at the Olympics and third overall in the Tour of the Basque Country behind the Jumbo-Visma duo Primož Rolgič and Jonas Vingegaard.

His lowest overall placing came at Strade Bianche where he finished in seventh place, showing how strong and consistent he has been so far in 2021.

The GP Plouay takes place in Brittany, France on August 29 with the European Championships in Italy happening on September 12, and the Worlds on September 26. After that, it's the Italian Classics with the final Monument of the year Il Lombardia on October 9. Pogačar is also holding an event the day before the Vuelta in Slovenia.

Meanwhile, the Vuelta a España begins on August 14 in Burgos and ends three weeks later after 21 stages in Santiago de Compostela on September 5. 

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.