Watch: Ruta del Sol stage one highlights

Catch up with highlights of first stage of the Ruta del Sol

(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

The 2018 Ruta del Sol (February 14-18) will see some of the world’s top riders compete over five stages in the south of Spain.

The race, which is a 2.1 category race and part of the UCI Europe Tour, offers a varied parcours with stages for every type of rider, and has therefore attracted some pretty big names.

With two uphill finishes on stage two and four, the race has attracted some big name GC riders including Chris Froome (Team Sky) who is riding his first race of the 2018 season, Mikel Landa (Movistar), Jakob Fuglsang (Astana), and Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo)

>>> Ruta del Sol 2018: Everything you need to know about Chris Froome's return to racing

However there are also two stages for the sprinters on stages one and three, with Sacha Modlo (EF Education First-Drapac), Clément Venturini (Ag2r La Mondiale), and Thomas Boudat (Direct Energie) among the fastmen in the race.

The opening stage of the race features five climbs but should be one for the sprinters with its flat finish, as the riders cover 197.6km from Mijas to Granada.

The Ruta del Sol continues on Thursday with a 140km stage between Otura and La Guardia de Jaén.