Vuelta a Espana: Twin approach could net Simon Yates grand title

An aggressive style of riding may have cost Simon Yates a grand tour victory earlier this season but he will not sacrifice his principles as the final three-week race of the year begins in Malaga today.

Simon Yates of Orica-Scott on his way to winning Stage Six. Picture: Alex Broadway/

The 26-year-old from Bury spent 13 days in the leader’s pink jersey at May’s Giro d’Italia before dramatically falling out of contention on the third-to-last day as Chris Froome made it three grand tour wins in a row.

But the Lancastrian will adopt the same mentality as he looks to finish the job at the Vuelta a Espana over the coming weeks.

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“I don’t feel any difference in my approach to racing after the Giro,” said Yates.

“Since the very beginning, I’ve always turned up to races trying to win.”

Yates will be supported by his twin brother and Mitchelton-Scott team-mate Adam as the race heads from Andalucia into the rural heart of Spain, up the mountains of Andorra and towards a finish in Madrid on September 16.

“Whenever we raced together, one of us always was not so good unfortunately, or unlucky,” said Simon. “The last race we did together where we were both really good was back in 2013. So we hope to change our fortunes.”

Yates will be up against the likes of former winners Nairo Quintana and Fabio Aru, plus Richie Porte, Thibault Pinot and Miguel Angel Lopez in the fight for the leader’s red jersey.

Defending Vuelta champion Froome will not race after competing in the last four Grand Tours, winning three of them.

Team Sky originally planned for Geraint Thomas to race, but his victory in the Tour de France changed that, and Sky will instead give Michal Kwiatkowski the chance to lead a Grand Tour squad, while 23-year-old Londoner Tao Geoghegan Hart makes his debut in a three-week race.