Allan Davis could soon find himself a teammate of Alberto Contador for the third time in his career, after reports that the Australian is close to signing with Astana. Davis this week left Quick Step a year early after one and a half seasons with the Belgian squad.
Rumours of Astana's interest in Davis had started to circulate in October as the Kazakh team began to restructure in the wake of departures from the squad for US-based RadioShack. Davis, 29, confirmed to Australian website News Mail on October 17 that Astana was one of a number of teams with which he had been in contact.
"Astana and other teams are interested. I have one more year on contract with Quick Step, that's true, but there is a buy-out clause if needed," he said.
In reporting his departure from Quickstep Dutch and Spanish media reported on Saturday that Astana had maintained its interest in the sprinter over the intervening months.
A move to Astana would allow Davis a level of autonomy in terms of his race schedule as he would become the team's most pedigreed sprinter. Despite a largely successful season in 2009, he had been forced to share responsibility at Quick Step with a number of riders, including Belgian star Tom Boonen.
If Davis does sign with Astana, it will be the third time he will have ridden on the same team as Alberto Contador and the second time the two have ridden for an Astana-backed team. They first rode together at Spanish squad ONCE in 2003 and remained with the team through several iterations until its final year as Astana-Würth in 2006.
Following Davis' acquittal from involvement in the Operación Puerto affair in December 2006, he was then re-united with Contador at Discovery Channel for the 2007 season.
Astana have already secured the signatures of Paolo Tiralongo, David De La Fuente, Andriy Grivko, Enrico Gasparotto and 2006 Tour de France Champion Oscar Pereiro for the 2010 season.