Brugge - De Panne is one of the most least known WorldTour classics as it takes place mid-week and usually finishes with a peloton sprint. This year the crosswinds might return and with rainy conditions we might have an exciting battle like in 2020.
The Volta a Catalunya route this year includes three mountain stages with a stacked start list full of strong GC riders. It will be a treat for w/kg aficionados and an important test before the Giro d'Italia with multiple of the big contenders for that race starting here, including Remco Evenepoel, Primož Roglič and Geraint Thomas.
Most of Milano-Sanremo is a boring race but the final kilometres never disappoint with a hard tempo expected on the Cipressa and attacks from big stars on the Poggio guaranteed. This is the easiest monument to finish but the hardest to win as there are many possibilities and options and a wide range of riders can win that might not be mentioned in this preview at all.
Primož Roglič and Wout van Aert will start their 2023 road season in Tirreno-Adriatico, with Jumbo-Visma sending a stacked team. Newly crowned Strade Bianche winner Tom Pidcock, Enric Mas, Adam Yates and many other great GC riders will make this "race of the two seas" exciting .
Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogačar going head to head this early in the season, after the amazing 2022 Tour de France, is a dream come true for cycling fans. Both the Tour de France champions performed exceptionally well in Spanish races in February, achieving a combined 9 wins in just 9 race days.
The second edition of O Gran Camiño will feature the reigning Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard who will begin his season here, a huge coup for the organisers. The early Spanish pre-season races have been blessed with big stars, with Pogačar previously attending Clasica Jaen and Vuelta a Andalucia. Here in Galicia, Vingegaard's biggest challenger is likely to be Movistar with Ruben Guerreiro as well as Cofidis who bring three viable GC leaders.
Jaén Paraiso Interior is a new Spanish gravel race, billed as the future Iberian rival to Strade Bianche. Despite this being only the second edition of the exciting 1.1 UCI category race, the start list is impressive as Tadej Pogačar, the best male cyclist in the last three years, will begin his 2023 campaign in the south of Spain.
Clasica de Almeria is one of the biggest one-day races in February, with its 1.Pro status (read UCI Points) and great location attracting many teams. The sprinters list is impressive and long, including Arnaud De Lie, Alexander Kristoff, Fernando Gaviria, Jordi Meeus, Giacomo Nizzolo and other fast finishers.
The Tour of Oman 2022 will feature the hardest overall parcours the race has ever seen, with four of the five stages finishing up a climb. Pure W/Kg climbers like Jan Hirt or Louis Meintjes will be happy with 10%+ gradient finishes and consistency throughout the week will be very important as every stage finish is hard.
Volta a Valenciana is one of the most exciting 2.Pro races and it always gathers an impressive start list thanks to the Valenciana region being the pre-season hot spot of cycling training in Europe. This year's race will feature a very strong Bahrain-Victorious team that has sent their A-List squad with Bilbao, Landa, Caruso, Wright, Mäder, Mohorič and Poels. Who will challenge them?