Remco Evenepoel, Sepp Kuss and Adam Yates to make season debuts this weekend

Several top riders starting 2024 campaigns in Portugal, Spain and Oman - here's our guide to who is racing where

Clock15:46, Friday 9th February 2024

© Sirotti Stefano

Remco Evenepoel is one of the riders getting his 2024 season underway this weekend

Much of the men's peloton has already started their 2024 racing season, either at the Santos Tour Down Under or the variety of smaller races that have taken place over the last month. But when it comes to the top stars of the sport, we tend to have to wait a little longer to see them in action, as they time their season-starts carefully around goals like the Tour of Flanders, Giro d'Italia and Tour de France.

Getting into February, the racing starts to ramp up, with the Volta ao Algarve, Tour of Oman and various hilly one-day races tempting riders like Remco Evenpoel, Sepp Kuss and Wout van Aert out of their off-seasons and back pinning on a number.

To keep track of where the best talent will be lining up over the coming month, we have put together a short guide of where 20 of the world’s best riders will be soon making their 2024 season debuts.

Yates, Evenepoel and Van Aert start the season this weekend

Adam Yates (UAE Team Emirates) is perhaps the biggest name who will be making his season debut at the Tour of Oman from Saturday, where he will be the race favourite and will be hoping to be in good shape ahead of the UAE Tour - an important target for his team, naturally.

However, most eyes will be on the Vuelta a Murcia, the Figueira Champions Classic and the Clasica de Almeria over the next few days. That is because a whole host of riders are starting their campaigns in these three races on Saturday and Sunday, to open up the legs before the Volta ao Algarve starts on Wednesday.

Both Sepp Kuss (Visma-Lease a Bike) and Arnaud De Lie (Lotto Dstny) will turn out at the one-day Vuelta a Murcia on Saturday, whilst across the border in Portugal, Soudal Quick-Step pair Remco Evenepoel and Mikel Landa, and UAE Team Emirates’ João Almeida and Marc Hirschi will all lineup at the Figueira Champions Classic.

Read more:

On Sunday, Visma-Lease a Bike’s Wout van Aert and Olav Kooij will race the Clasica de Almeria, which should end in a sprint. Both riders will lead the WorldTeam in May’s Giro d’Italia, where the ambition will be to chase stage victories.

Thomas, Geoghegan Hart and Pidcock debut at stacked Volta ao Algarve

Celebrating its 50th edition this year, Portugal’s Volta ao Algarve has attracted undoubtedly the strongest start list of the season to date. Beginning on Wednesday 14 February, the five-day stage race will see Van Aert, Landa, Evenepoel, Almeida and Kuss all continue their fledgling seasons next week. They will be joined by a trio of British riders who will all be appearing on the road for the first time in 2024.

The Ineos Grenadiers duo of Geraint Thomas and Tom Pidcock have both chosen to dust off their racing cleats at the Volta ao Algarve. The former plans to ride only 17 race days ahead of his mount at the Giro d’Italia title, whilst, for the latter, a shortened ‘cross campaign should leave him fresh for a possible crack at the general classification in the Algarve.

Read more:

Meanwhile, the race will welcome not only the season debut but the hotly-anticipated comeback of Tao Geoghegan Hart to racing. The former Ineos Grenadiers man crashed out of last year’s Giro d’Italia in terrible fashion, shattering his femur into six pieces and bringing about the end of his 2023 campaign. Following a lengthy process of recovery and rehabilitation, the 2020 Giro champion has switched to Lidl-Trek over the winter and will race without any pressure to lead for the first few months of the season.

Read more: Serene expectations: Tao Geoghegan Hart’s new adventure at Lidl-Trek

Prior to the Volta ao Algarve, the Clásica Jaen one-day race next Monday will see Juan Ayuso (UAE Team Emirates) and Carlos Rodríguez (Ineos Grenadiers) open the chapter on their seasons.

A waiting game to see Pogačar, Vingegaard and Roglič

Jonas Vingegaard and Cian Uijtdebroeks will begin their campaigns at O Gran Camiño on 22 February, a somewhat lowkey entry to the season for the Visma-Lease a Bike pair. In contrast, there will be plenty of eyes on Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) when he first appears at Strade Bianche, a race he won back in 2022.

As for the third major contender to this year’s Tour de France crown, Primož Roglič (Bora-Hansgrohe) will first pin on a race number at Paris-Nice, which begins on 3 March.

Read more:

Finally, it looks like we might not see Alpecin-Deceuninck’s Jasper Philipsen and Mathieu van der Poel until Milan-San Remo on 16 March. There is a chance that the world champion may turn out at Strade Bianche alongside Pogačar, but in all likelihood, Het Nieuwsblad reports that Van der Poel will start his season with a title defence at the year’s first Monument.

To have a look at the full WorldTour calendar for 2024, and find start lists for each race, click here. You can keep up with all the latest news, results and reactions by checking out the Racing tab on the GCN website.

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