In recent years, departure place Mataró has evolved into a regular host. It’s the fourth time in a row that the town serves as the start to a Volta a Catalunya stage. In 2015 and 2016, the riders left for Olot and last year for La Molina in the high mountains.
Now the route travels to Valls, another familiar name in the Volta a Catalunya. In fact, Valls and pro-cycling is a weathered combination. In 2013 the town hosted the Vuelta a España, while in the years 2013-2016 the Catalonian stage race finished here. Wout Poels (2016) and Alejandro Valverde (2015) soloed to victory in the same finale. First the 6.3 kilometres climb up the Coll de Lilla (average gradient at 4.8%) before an 8 kilometres drop and a flat run-in of 2 kilometres to the line. Both Simon Gerrans (2013) and Luka Mezgec (2014) won bunch sprints in Valls.
The 2nd stage of the 2018 Volta a Catalunya begins with 10 kilometres on the flat before the rest of the race is played out on rolling roads. At kilometre 100 the riders enter a false flat section of approximately 25 kilometres. Before the highest point is reached the gradients go up to some 4%. Following a flat intermezzo the riders drop down a long descent to the finale.
The first three riders on the line take time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds, while intermediate sprints (at kilometre 104.7 and at kilometre 146.4) come with 3, 2 and 1 seconds.
Volta a Catalunya 2018 stage 2: Route maps, height profiles, and more
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