Gallery: Astana presented in Dubai

Team chooses sunny climate for season start

Team manager Alexander Vinokourov and sponsor Kaletayev Darkhan of Samruk Kazyna today presented the 2015 Astana Pro Team in Dubai, where the Tour de France winner Vincenzo Nibali will line up for his first race of the season at the Dubai Tour later this week.

The team brought in 11 new riders this season, with Dutchman Lars Boom a likely candidate for the overall victory in the Dubai Tour. Also joining were Dario Cataldo from Sky, Davide Malacarne (Europcar), Diego Rosa (Androni), Luis Leon Sanchez (Caja Rural), Rein Taaramäe (Cofidis), Laurens De Vreese (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and young Kazakhstani riders Maxat Ayazbayev and Bakhtiyar Kozhatayev.

Astana is under close scrutiny by the UCI this season after last year having the doping cases of brothers Maxim and Valentin Iglinskiy as well as a number of its riders on the Continental team, but Vinokourov and his team have agreed to adhere to additional regulations for the season. "We are committed to a clean sport and the start has been made by setting up laboratories in Kazakhstan along with Memorandum of Understanding with various bodies," Vinokourov said according to Gulf News. "In addition, we are educating young riders and at the same time we implement tough tests on the domestic circuit. Honestly, nobody wins in a doping scandal. At Astana, we have won honestly and we want to win honestly in the future as well."

View the full gallery from the team presentation here.

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