The 47th edition of the Volta ao Algarve is about to hit the road, with some of the greatest athletes in world cycling. The race will be held between May 5th and 9th with 25 teams registered to race.
Five stages, 25 teams, 175 riders and 775.8 kilometers to be covered between Lagos and Alto do Malhão, in Loulé. This year’s edition of the Volta ao Algarve saw its date postponed from February to May due to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, but the race still managed to attract the usual prestige.
The ProSeries category race will feature seven WorldTeams, three of which are ranked in the word’s top five. They are Deceuninck Quick-Step, INEOS Grenadiers, and UAE Team Emirates. Also competing will be the 6th best team in the world, the German Bora-Hansgrohe, AG2R Citroën Team, Groupama-FDJ and Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux.
In addition to the teams in cycling’s highest category, the Volta ao Algarve will feature eight ProTeam teams. The Spanish Burgos-BH, Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, Equipo Kern Pharma and Euskaltel-Euskadi, the French Delko and Team Arkéa-Samsic, the Belgian Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB, and also the American Rally Cycling.
To close the lot of participating teams are the country’s nine continental teams, Antarte-Feirense, Atum General-Tavira-Maria Nova Hotel, Efapel, Kelly-Simoldes-UDO, LA Alumínios-LA Sport, Louletano-Loulé Concelho, Rádio Popular-Boavista, Tavfer-Measindot-Mortágua and W52-FC Porto.
The continental team Hagens Berman Axeon, which launched the young Portuguese talents João Almeida, Rúben Guerreiro and the twins Ivo and Rui Oliveira will also be in the Algarve with the two Portuguese who are part of it, Diogo Barbosa and Pedro Andrade.
This year’s edition will present sports fans with a more intense show, with several renowned riders and a race that is expected to be more open and unpredictable. With this, the Portuguese teams will have a unique opportunity to stand out among an impressive international peloton.
One of the new features this year will be the initial stage of the race. Unlike what we have seen in previous years, Lagos will be the starting location and Portimão will be the city to welcome the first winner of this 47th edition. This one is expected to have a sprint finish, as well as the third stage, with the finish line in Tavira, which promises great emotion, given the presence of some of the best sprinters in the world.
The Bora-Hansgrohe team will have the German Pascal Ackermann, who has 30 career victories and is ranked 38th in the world ranking. Deceuninck-Quick Step comes with a set purely dedicated to the sprint, with Fabio Jakobsen, Davide Ballerini, Shane Archbold, and Sam Bennett, the sprinter with the most wins at the start of the season and who has 54 career wins.
Like it was in the previous years, the race also has two stages with a climb finish. The second stage ends in Alto da Fóia, Monchique, and has been decisive in deciding the race. This happened with Tadej Pogacar in 2019 and Remco Evenepoel in 2020. The last stage, with arrival at Alto do Malhão will confirm the winner of this 47th edition of the Volta ao Algarve. The race will also include, on the fourth day, the usual time trial in Lagoa, which can also make some differences to the general classification of the race.
Although a more disputed race is expected, we will have some names that, right from the start, promise to fight for the general classification. This is the case of the current national champion and 2013 world champion, Rui Costa (UAE Team Emirates), Danish champion, Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck-Quick Step), and German Lennard Kämna (Bora-Hansgrohe), who has already won this year at the Tour of Catalonia. Besides these three, Diego Rosa (Team Arkéa-Samsic), who has already won the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali and has discussed the top 10 in several races worldwide, José Manuel Diáz (Delko), winner of the last Tour of Turkey, and also Rémy Mertz (Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB) and Élie Gesbert (Team Arkéa-Samsic), who discussed the general classification of the Comunitat Valenciana, will also be present.
– The last time Portimão hosted a stage finish of Volta ao Algarve was in 2012, in an individual time trial, and the winner was Bradley Wiggins (Sky). The last time a sprint finish was done in Portimão, Heinrich Haussler (Cervelo Test Team) won.
– Deceuninck-Quick Step is the team with the most wins this year and it also occupies the first place in the world team ranking, with 18 wins in 2021.
– Deceuninck-Quick Step is the team with the most appearances in Volta ao Algarve, having always participated on the race since 2006. Consequently, it is also the one with the most consecutive participations.
– AG2R will be at the Algarve race for the first time since 2012.
– Teams Kern Pharma, Burgos, Bingoal, Axeon, Arkéa, and Delko have never competed in Volta ao Algarve.
– Three top 5 world ranking teams will be racing at the Algarve (Deceuninck Quick-Step, Ineos Grenadiers, and UAE Team Emirates).
– A cyclist in the top 20 of the world ranking, Sam Bennett (Deceuninck-Quick Step) will be competing in Volta ao Algarve.
– There will be 10 riders from the world’s top 100 competing.
– The Volta ao Algarve will have athletes from 26 nationalities.
– There will be six road and time trial national champions
UAE Team Emirates
AG2R Citroën Team
Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
Equipo Kern Pharma
Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB
Atum General-Tavira-Maria Nova Hotel
LA Alumínios-LA Sport
Hagens Berman Axeon
5/05/2021: Lagos – Portimão, 189,5 km
6/05/2021: Sagres – Fóia, 192,8 km
7/05/2021: Faro – Tavira, 203,1 km
8/05/2021: Lagoa – Lagoa, 20,3 km
9/05/2021: Albufeira – Malhão, 170,1 km