Alexandre Vinokourov's involvement with this year's Vuelta a España was one of the hottest topics in the lead up to the race. Bold pre-Tour de France statements gave the impression of a triumphant return to the helm of Astana. Instead, the Kazakh was tied up in negotiations until days before the Vuelta's start.
He played down expectations of a high overall finish before the race, but Vinokourov looked in good shape as he rolled down the start ramp in Assen. Time will tell whether Vinokourov can return to the top of the Vuelta podium. This image gallery will capture the key moments throughout his race.
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