Primoz Roglic from Jumbo Visma is seeking a third-straight title at the Vuelta a Espana after wins in 2019 and 2020, but he’s still nicked up after a couple of gruesome crashes in last month’s Tour de France. Despite the injuries, Roglic is the betting favorite at the 2021 Vuelta a Espana at +100 odds. Egan Bernal from Ineos Grenadiers is +400 odds to win the Vuelta and deny Roglic a third-straight win in Spain.

Primoz roglic Egan Bernal 2021 Vuelta a Espana odds
Primoz Roglic (center) on the podium after winning the 2020 Vuelta a Espana. (Image: Getty)

The winner of the Vuelta dons a red jersey. Roglic is attempting to win his third and become the fourth rider in cycling history to win the Vuelta three times. Spain’s Roberto Heras holds the record with four victories. Tony Rominger and Alberto Contador have each won the Vuelta three times.

2021 Vuelta a Espana Odds
  • Primoz Roglic +100
  • Egan Bernal +400
  • Richard Carapaz +800
  • High Carthy +1200
  • Adam Yates +1200
  • Mikel Landa +1600
  • Miguel Angel Lopez +2000
  • Enric Mas +2500
  • Sepp Kuss +2500
  • Pavl Sivakov +2500
  • Mark Padun +2800
  • Aleksandr Vlasov +2800
  • Tom Pidcock +3000
  • Guilo Cicone +3500
  • Jack Haig +5000

The Vuelta a Espana is translated into the Tour of Spain, and is one of the three major Grand Tour races along with the Tour de France and Giro D’Italia. It’s a grueling three-week race over 3,400 kilometers that has seven challenging mountain stages in the Pyrenees.

Vuelta a Espana Map 2021
The map of the 2021 Vuelta a Espana course that features 21 stages. (Image: CyclingNews)

Triple threat Bernal

The 2021 Vuelta begins on Saturday and this year’s race marks the return of the individual time trial, which makes its first appearance at the Vuelta in 20 years. The final stage, Stage 21, features a tough time trial on a 33km route from Padron to Santiago de Compostela.

Bernal won the 2019 Tour de France and the 2021 Giro D’Italia. The young star from Colombia is now seeking a win at the Vuelta a Espana to complete a Triple Crown with wins in all three Grand Tours in Italy, France, and Spain. Bernal skipped the 2021 Tour de France this year for Ineos to be well-rested for the Vuelta.

Roglic dropped out of the 2021 Tour de France when the race reached the Alps and he was too far behind the GC leaders. He looked like a mummy after being wrapped in bandages following a crash-marred, first few stages in Brittany. Jumbo Visma and Roglic determined it would be in his best interest to drop out of Le Tour to heal his injuries so he could be ready to defend his title at the Vuelta.

Richard Carapaz, Bernal’s teammate at Ineos, comes into the Vuelta at +800 odds. Carapaz finished in third place in the 2021 Tour de France despite not winning a single stage. He was more than seven minutes behind Tadej Pogacar, who won the yellow jersey in back-to-back years.

With Pogacar sitting this one out, the red jersey at the Vuelta comes down to Bernal and Roglic. If Roglic wins, he joins an elite group of three-time champions. If Bernal wins, he’ll become the youngest cyclist in history to win all three Grand Tours.

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