Vinokourov named as a candidate for parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan
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Friday, November 25, 2011

Vinokourov named as a candidate for parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan

by VeloNation Press at 7:47 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Could future in politics beckon after 2012 Olympic Games?

Alexandre VinokourovsIt’s long been thought that he might have a management position on the Astana team after he retires from cycling, but Alexandre Vinkourov could end up in a position of greater political influence once his career has ended.

The 38 year old rider was today named as one of the candidates for parliamentary elections on January 15th. The ruling Nur Otan party announced the identities of 127 candidates today, with Vinokourov being part of a group of well known sportsmen, artists and singers. He and the hurdler Olga Shishigina plus the boxer Yermakhan Ibraimov were each nominated, the latter having won gold medals in the 2000 Olympic Games.

“It is an honour for me to participate in elections as a candidate for deputy,” the Astana captain said, according to DH.be, but then stressed that he would concentrate on other things in the medium-term future. “This year I want to finish on the bike seat, and next year could participate in the Olympic Games, focussing on them, and after helping Kazakhstan however I can.”

However under the political system of the country, the deputies in the Majilis (lower house) can be chosen from the list of candidates after the elections take place. In addition to that, there is scope for the party to change during the term; this would seem to enable Vinokourov – if selected – to take up the political position after the Olympics.

The 2006 Vuelta a Espana winner, who served a lengthy ban after he tested positive for a blood transfusion the following season, has long had political connections in the country. Indeed the Astana team was set up by the country’s government to aid him after his-then Liberty Seguros team disintegrated in 2006 in connection with Operación Puerto.

He crashed heavily in this year’s Tour de France and said afterwards that he would retire. However Vinokourov later reversed that decision, saying that he wanted to do one more season.

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