Itzulia Basque Country

The Itzulia Basque Country, officially known as the Tour of the Basque Country, is a prestigious annual road cycling stage race held every April in Spain's Basque Country. Featured on the UCI World Tour calendar, this event is a true climbers' paradise, with its route through the mountainous terrain, packed with short, yet brutally steep ascents. The race's stages are known for their brevity, seldom exceeding 200 kilometers, but what they lack in distance, they more than make up for in grueling climbs, some with gradients soaring beyond 20%.

History of the Itzulia Basque Country

The race has a rich yet complex history, dating back to its intermittent editions from 1924 to 1935, which were halted by the Spanish Civil War. It re-emerged in 1952 under the guise of the Gran Premio de la Bicicleta Eibarresa, initiated by the Eibar Cycling Club. The event transformed in 1969, merging with the original Tour of the Basque Country, marking a fresh chapter with the race being relaunched as the modern tour we recognize today. Despite its discontinuation in 1973 and subsequent management changes, it has been a consistent fixture in the cycling calendar, barring the 2020 edition canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The race has recently expanded, introducing the Itzulia Women in 2022, aligning with the UCI Women's World Tour.

Most victories in the Itzulia Basque Country

The Tour has celebrated many illustrious cyclists, with Spain's José Antonio González and Alberto Contador each clinching four titles, demonstrating their dominance in this challenging race. They are followed by notable riders like Sean Kelly and Tony Rominger, each with three wins. The victor's reward isn't just the prestige of winning but also the unique tradition of donning a Basque beret on the podium.

Recent winners of the Itzulia Basque Country

2023 Jonas Vingegaard
2022 Daniel Martinez
2021 Primož Roglič
2020 Not ridden due to pandemic
2019 Ion Izagirre
2018 Primož Roglič
2017 Alejandro Valverde
2016 Alberto Contador
2015 Joaquim Rodríguez

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