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After winning the queen stage to Alto Do Malhao three years in a row, the British team will skip the Volta ao Algarve in favour of the Vuelta a Andalucia and the Tour du Haut Var

Photo: Sirotti

TEAM SKY

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TOUR DU HAUT VAR

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VOLTA AO ALGARVE

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VUELTA A ANDALUCIA

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06.01.2014 @ 19:03 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Despite playing a major role in the past three editions where they have won the queen stage to Alto do Malhao, Team Sky will not return to the Volta ao Algarve in 2014. Instead, the team will line up at the Vuelta a Andalucia and the Tour du Haut Var.

 

Team Sky will start their season in a different way than they have done in the past three years as the team has decided to skip the Volta ao Algarve from their early-season schedule. Instead, the team will line up in the Vuelta a Andalucia and the Tour du Haut Var as they prepare for the first major stage races and classics in March.

 

After not doing the race in its inaugural season in 2010, Team Sky has been present on the start line in Portugal for the past three years. The team has enjoyed much success in the race and has in fact won the queen stage to the Alto do Malhao in all three editions.

 

Stephen Cummings got the team's relationship with the Portuguese race off to a good start in 2011 when he emerged as the strongest on the steep climb. One year later Richie Porte laid the foundations for his overall win by storming to a dominant win on the slopes and last year it was Sergio Henao who completed the hattrick for the Brits on the famed climb. Furthermore, Bradley Wiggins took a close win over Tony Martin in the time trial of the 2012 edition with the narrowest of margins.

 

The team has less experience with the races in Andalucia and Haut Var. The team has only done the Spanish event twice, in 2010 and 2011, while the two-day French race has only featured on their calendar in 2010 season. This year the team has, however, made the decision to return to the races after a few years of absence.

 

In the early season, the British teams plans to line up at the Tour Down Under, the Tour of Qatar, the Mallorca Challenge and the Tour of Oman before the two new races bring the month of February to a close.

 

The races in Algarve and Andalucia both take place from February 19 to 23 while the Tour du Haut Var is scheduled for February 22-23.

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