Ekimov steps down as Katusha general manager

Azevedo to replace Russian leading Katusha-Alpecin in 2017

Team Katusha-Alpecin has announced that directeur sportif José Azevedo will take over as General Manager from Viacheslav Ekimov in 2017. The squad also unveiled its new look for the coming season at its camp in Valencia today.

Ekimov took the role of General Manager with the team in 2012 from the RadioShack squad, where he had been a directeur sportif.

The team said that Ekimov informed the team's management that he wanted to step down at this year's Tour de France, and Azevedo was their choice to replace him.

"The board called me to have a meeting. After three years in the team I expected that we were going to talk about the team for next year, our goals, etc," Azevedo said. "But the board proposed to me this new job, with more responsibility and to continue the good work as Katusha-Alpecin to be one of the best teams in the world.

"It was a big surprise to me. I asked for a few days to talk to my family and to think about this opportunity," he added.

"I also wanted to be sure that for some races I could still be in the car as a director. I need to maintain my close contact with the riders for three reasons: first it is a passion for me; also I don't want to lose the good feeling that come from doing the job of a sports director and lastly, I need contact with the riders to know what is going on with them."


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