Kolobnev moving from Saxo Bank to Katusha?
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Monday, November 16, 2009

Kolobnev moving from Saxo Bank to Katusha?

by Conal Andrews at 5:18 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 

The Katusha team is a little short on top Russian riders but that situation could improve if Alexandr Kolobnev transfers to the team.

According to WielerFlitz and Ciclismo-line, the 28 year old has signed a deal and will thus leave Saxo Bank one year earlier than scheduled. Last year he signed a contract until 2010 with the Danish squad.

Kolobnev turned pro in 2002 with Acqua & Sapone-Cantina Tollo, and while he hasn’t taken many wins, he has amassed some very impressive performances. After placing tenth in the Olympic road race (2004), seventh in the road world championships (2005) and winning a stage in the 2006 Vuelta a la Comunidad Valenciana, he had a step up in 2007 when he won the Monte Paschi Eroica, took a very impressive solo victory in Paris-Nice, then finished as runner-up to Paolo Bettini in the world championships.

The 28 year old Russian has a knack for hitting top form in the biggest events, competing quietly for months and then coming good at the right time. Last season he finished one place off the podium in the Olympic road race, while this season he was the silver medallist behind Cadel Evans in the worlds.

Whether he competes with Saxo Bank or Katusha in 2010, it’s likely that more big performances are in store. Kolobnev is maturing as a rider and this season he showed that he’s now a bona fide Classics contender. He had strong performances in the Giro di Lombardia (3rd), the Amstel Gold Race (6th) and Liège-Bastogne-Liège (9th).

If he does change squads, he will race alongside Kim Kirchen, Joaquin Rodriguez, Serguei Ivanov and Filippo Sabatini.

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