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Astana in Monaco: Kazakh Cycling Team presented roaster for 2011

4 February 2011 11:16
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MONACO. February 4. KAZINFORM. The light blue and yellow colours of Kazakhstan-backed cycling team Astana stand out in the peloton and its riders have proven themselves worthy since the team's creation in 2006. Yet, there are still those who need to be formally introduced of the 27 young and energetic athletes of 2011. As the spirit of the team gains both strength and speed, the passion for cycling amongst the new generation of riders grows with it.

Kairat Kelimbetov, chief executive of the Samruk-Kazyna National Welfare Fund and President of the Kazakhstan Cycling Federation, proudly presented the Astana UCI professional road bicycle team on 28 January 2011 to a welcoming audience in the "Grimaldi Forum" congress center in Monaco.

The main focus of his presentation was the remarkable successes of Alexander Vinokurov in 2010 as a symbol of perseverance for the whole team and a stimulus to reach even higher standards during this year's cycling season.

According to the press service of the Kazakh Foreign Ministry, the beautiful scenery of Monte Carlo complemented the video presentation of the team's successes in 2010. The international press was able to meet in person the new ambitious cohort of Kazakhstan's best known team who are entering this season's races with a spirited desire to stand on the podium: Assan Bazaev, Alexander Dyachenko, Maxim Gourov, Maxim and Valentine Iglinskiy, Roman Kireyev, Eugenie Nepomnyachshiy, Sergei Renev, Andrei Zeits and Dmitry Fofonov.

The Astana Team's roaster for 2011 also features 16 European cyclists including such strong riders as Roman Kreuziger of the Czech Republic, Thomas Vaitkus of Lithuania, Enrico Gasparotto and Paolo Tiorongo of Italy.

According to media reports, Team Astana will pursue a goal of winning one of the three Grand Tours - Giro d'Italia, Tour de France, and Vuelta a Espana. The pundits view Vinokourov and Kreuziger as the two leaders most likely to challenge the overall victory in prestigious races.

Fast, young, ambitious and talented, Team Astana looks forward to competing intensely in both the sprints and classics and giving a remarkable show for spectators.

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Zhanna Nurmaganbetova

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