Former AG2R rider Tanel Kangert becomes pro again, with Astana this time
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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Former AG2R rider Tanel Kangert becomes pro again, with Astana this time

by Bjorn Haake at 3:27 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Estonian rider spent one year as an elite rider

Estonian Tanel Kangert is currently riding for French team EC Saint-Etienne Loire, but is ready to sign a contract with Astana for 2011, according to Delfi Sport. The 23-year-old was a trainee for AG2R in 2007, then spent 2008 and 2009 with the French team. In 2010 he did not get a contract, so he rode with the French Continental team located in St Etienne.

Kangert was also in touch with Cofidis, through fellow Estonian Rein Taaramäe. "The directors of Cofidis asked me for a CV, but I didn't send it to them. Deep down I felt that currently that wasn't the right choice for me." His agent, Jaan Kirsipuu (who still races actively at age 41), had the task of finding a different team.

Kangert made Kirsipuu check out Astana and Katusha. "At the penultimate day of the Tour de France, the first email from Alexander Vinokourov came in," Kangert said. "I did not set any conditions, I just wanted to have the opportunity to race for Astana."

Kangert was suffering from knee problems in 2009, which was part of the reason why AG2R-La Mondiale did not extend his contract. The current Estonian time trial champion is back at a good level and he has been one of the best riders in the French amateur circuit. His biggest successes were the Tour du Pays Roannais, the GP de Cours-la-Ville and the GP Seb Tartü.

Two former members of EC Saint-Etienne Loire ride for AG2R now, Cyril Dessel and Rene Mandri.

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