Alejandro Valverde returns to the races a month and a half after putting an end to the first part of his season at Liège-Bastogne-Liège with nine victories, included two stages and the GC of the Volta a Catalunya and the GC of the Abu Dhabi Tour, both races of the UCI World Tour. The Murcian cyclist returns in another event of the first world division: the Tour of Switzerland, one of the great novelties of his calendar in 2018. The Murcian rider returns on the Route d’Occitanie, a French race that replaces the Route du Sud, a four-stage round with two last days complicated.
This is the first contact with the competition after several weeks training and preparing the Tour de France, that this season begins a week later than usual. The third stage, with four mountain passes and final in Les Montes d’Olmes, and the last one, with the Pic de Noire halfway, should solve the general of a race with important cyclists as the revelation of the 2018 season, the Colombian Egan Bernal.
It will be the second time that Valverde participates in this race. He was already in 2014, finishing second in the general classification, behind the Irishman Nicolas Roche.