Alexander Vinokourov to postpone retirement?
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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Alexander Vinokourov to postpone retirement?

by Xylon van Eyck at 3:51 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
Astana leader says he might ride Olympic road race

Alexandre VinokourovAlexander Vinokourov has intimated that he might postpone retirement in order to ride the Olympic road race in London next year. However the Astana leader, who is currently riding in his eighth Tour de France, continues to say it will be his last.

Vinokourov told Wielerland, ''If the Minister of Sport of my country asks me one last time to participate in the Olympic Games in 2012 like Sydney 2000, where I earned silver in the road race, I can hardly refuse. But the Tour de France is in any case, my last big race.''

The Kazakhstani also road the Olympic road race in Atlanta in 1996 and in Athens in 2004 where he finished 35th. He missed out on the Beijing Olympics in 2008 while serving a suspension for blood doping after testing positive in the 2007 Tour de France. Vinokourov announced his retirement from the sport after being suspended, but then returned in 2009.

At 37 years old, he showed that he is still one of the best cyclists in the world this season by winning a stage in both the Vuelta Ciclista al País Vasco and Tour de Romandie

Vinokourov also finished third yesterday on a tough uphill finish in the Tour de France, racing in just behind stage winner Cadel Evans and Alberto Contador. He was third in last month’s Criterium du Dauphiné and has said that he is aiming for a podium finish in the Tour.

It is believed that Vinokourov will take on a management role within the Astana Pro Team after he retires. The team was mostly set up to support Vinokourov in his bid to win the Tour de France.


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