Veteran Nibali returns to Astana ‘family’
September 24 2021 12:04 AM
Vincenzo Nibali
Vincenzo Nibali

AFP/ Leuven, Belgium

Veteran Italian cyclist Vincenzo Nibali is to leave Trek-Segafredo and return to the Astana team where his vast experience will help the next generation of riders develop, the Kazakh team said yesterday.
The 36-year-old won the Vuelta a Espana in 2010, the Giro d’Italia in 2013 and 2016 and the Tour de France in 2014, joining an elite club of just seven men to have achieved the grand slam.
“I know everyone there,” said Nibali in reference to his first spell at Astana between 2013-2016. “It’s a real family and a team that brought me a lot of good things.”
“I have a few races targeted but lending my experience to a young team also tempts me,” he said.
Team director Alexandre Vinokourov was reading from the same script.
“Vincenzo Nibali needs no introduction, he spent the best years of his career with us, and the presence of such a champion will play a key role in the development of our younger riders.”
Meanwhile cycling’s road race world championships look set to take place in Africa for the first time in 2025, with the sport’s governing body the UCI set to rubber stamp Rwanda’s candidacy yesterday.
Rwanda enjoys a healthy cycling culture and runs an annual eight-day stage race the Tour of Rwanda around the hilly city of Kigali, and has been selected ahead of Morocco.
UCI president David Lappartient said when taking the post in 2017 he wanted to see Africa given a chance to host the annual event.
The UCI invites all member states to its annual congress, which takes place this Friday in Leuven ahead of the final weekend of the 2021 championships in Flanders. Autralia hosts the event in Wollongong in 2022, with Scotland in 2023 and Switzerland in 2024.

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