Miguel Angel Lopez extends with Astana for two years

Colombian hoping to develop into a Grand Tour rider

Fresh off the back of his overall victory at the Tour de Suisse, Miguel Ángel López has signed a two-year contract extension with Astana.

It was just a matter of hours after he had stepped down off the final podium in Davos that a new deal was placed in front of him and he put pen to paper. The victory was comfortably the biggest achievement of the 22-year-old Colombian's career, having turned professional with the Kazakh squad in 2015, and Astana have put their faith in him as he continues his development.

"I think that he can win a Grand Tour in the future" – said general manager Alexander Vinokourov in a statement.

"We have worked with the young Columbian talent from his first year in professional cycling, we believed in him, and we are proud of his results."

López, one of the latest off the conveyor belt of Colombian climbing talent, signaled his potential by winning the Tour de l'Avenir in 2014, earning him a pro contract at the tender age of 20. He won a stage and finished fourth overall at the Vuelta a Burgos in his neo-pro campaign, as well as finishing seventh at the Tour de Suisse with a breakthrough fourth place on the queen stage against some of the world's top climbers.

He has kicked on in 2016 with a stage and fourth at the Tour de San Luis, a stage and third at the Tour de Langkawi, and now a first taste of WorldTour success at Suisse.

"I chose to remain in Astana Pro Team for two more seasons because I want to continue to grow," said López, who has no shortage of ambition, having said at the end of last year that he wants to win all three Grand Tours.

"In these last two races seasons with Astana jersey I have achieved good results and this is the result of good work together with managers, sport directors and staff. I still have to learn a lot and I am sure that here in Astana I will improve much with the aim of doing well in the Grand Tours."

López is set to make his Grand Tour debut at the Vuelta a España in August but will first ride the Olympic road race in support of Nairo Quintana (Movistar).

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