2016 Vuelta a Andalucía
|UCI Europe Tour|
|Dates||17–21 February 2016|
|Distance||694.6 km (431.6 mi)|
|Winning time||17hr 41' 10"|
|Winner||Alejandro Valverde (ESP)||(Movistar Team)|
|Second||Tejay van Garderen (USA)||(BMC Racing Team)|
|Third||Bauke Mollema (NED)||(Trek-Segafredo)|
|Points||Ben Swift (GBR)||(Team Sky)|
|Mountains||Damiano Caruso (ITA)||(BMC Racing Team)|
|Sprints||Jérôme Baugnies (BEL)||(Wanty–Groupe Gobert)|
The 62nd edition of the Vuelta a Andalucía, also known as the Ruta del Sol, was held in Andalusia, in southern Spain, from 17 to 21 February 2016. Spanish rider Alejandro Valverde won the event after winning the final mountain-top stage; his fourth overall victory in the Vuelta a Andalucía.
The Vuelta a Andalucía is a road cycling stage race, rated as a 2.1 event of the 2016 UCI Europe Tour. Chris Froome, the previous year's champion, did not to defend his title. The race was run over five stages. The first three stages were moderately hilly and won by sprinters; the fourth was an individual time trial; the fifth and final stage had a summit finish atop the climb of Peñas Blancas.
The race comprised five stages, increasing in difficulty. The first, relatively flat stage, was won by Daniele Bennati in a sprint in the streets of Seville. The second ended with a third-category climb, followed by a technical descent into Córdoba, won by sprinter Nacer Bouhanni. The third stage featured several climbs, ending with a flat run-in to El Padul, won by Oscar Gatto in the sprint of a select group. The final two stages were decisive in the general classification. The fourth stage, a 21-kilometre (13 mi) individual time trial with a technical opening half and a climb at the finish, was won by Tejay van Garderen. The final stage ended with the climb of Peñas Blancas, a 14-kilometre (8.7 mi) climb near Estepona at an average gradient of 8%. Alejandro Valverde, in eight place after the time trial, attacked from afar to overhaul van Garderen and take the overall victory.
|1||17 February||Almonaster la Real to Sevilla||165.2 km (103 mi)||Hilly stage||Daniele Bennati (ITA)|
|2||18 February||Palomares del Río to Córdoba||186.3 km (116 mi)||Hilly stage||Nacer Bouhanni (FRA)|
|3||19 February||Monachil to El Padul||157.9 km (98 mi)||Hilly stage||Oscar Gatto (ITA)|
|4||20 February||Alhaurín de la Torre||21 km (13 mi)||Individual time trial||Tejay van Garderen (USA)|
|5||21 February||San Roque to Peñas Blancas||164.2 km (102 mi)||Mountain stage||Alejandro Valverde (ESP)|
|1||Daniele Bennati||Daniele Bennati||Imanol Estevez||Jérôme Baugnies||Daniele Bennati||Cofidis|
|2||Nacer Bouhanni||Nacer Bouhanni||Nacer Bouhanni|
|3||Oscar Gatto||Ben Swift||Damiano Caruso||Ben Swift||Tinkoff|
|4||Tejay van Garderen||Tejay van Garderen||BMC Racing Team|
|5||Alejandro Valverde||Alejandro Valverde|
|Final||Alejandro Valverde||Damiano Caruso||Jérôme Baugnies||Ben Swift||BMC Racing Team|
24 teams were invited to take part in the 2016 race. Ten of these were UCI WorldTeams; ten were UCI Professional Continental teams; and four were UCI Continental teams. Each team lined up seven riders - totaling 168 riders.
UCI Professional Continental teams
- "Ruta del Sol: Valverde snatchs victory from Van Gardere. Movistar veteran wins final stage atop Alto Penas Blancas". Cycling News. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 21 February 2016.
- "Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta Ciclista Del Sol - General Classification (preview)". ProCyclingStats. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
- "Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta Ciclista Del Sol - General Classification (stages)". ProCyclingStats. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
- Fotheringham, Alasdair (15 February 2016). "Vuelta a Andalucia Preview: Valverde favourite for fourth title". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
- "Valverde attacks from afar to win the Ruta del Sol". Velo News. Retrieved 21 February 2016.
- "Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta Ciclista Del Sol - General Classification (start list)". ProCyclingStats. Retrieved 15 February 2016.