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Aero-vent balance, MIPS and bright shells all trending updwards
Patriotic paint, progressive features and prototype Zipp wheels
From new-school Assos to old-school Italian to a new custom SpeedShop Program
Sony Action Cam, nasal expanders, Kappius wheels and more
2011 UCI status: ProTeam
Sponsor: Kazakh business consortium
Team Nationality: Kazakhstan
General Manager: Valentin Rekhert
Team Manager: Giuseppe Martinelli
Directeurs sportifs: Guido Bontempi, Lorenzo Lapage, Dmitri Sedoune, Alexander Shefer
A squad built around Vino
Alexandre Vinokourov remains the raison d’être for the Kazakhstan-backed squad, a role sharpened by the departure of Alberto Contador at the end of the 2010 season. The 37-year-old has geared his season around leading Astana at the Tour de France but as he’s past his best, he’ll probably just target stage wins. Newcomer Roman Kreuziger has plenty of stage race potential and should be visible at this year’s Giro d’Italia.
Look out for Maxim Iglinskiy in the early season races – he claimed his biggest victory to date last year when he won the Strade Bianchi – Eroica in March. Australian Simon Clarke has signed his first ProTeam contract with Astana and will bolster the lead-out train.
Grimpeur Rémy di Gregorio joins on a one-year contract from Français des Jeux and will provide mountain support during the grand tours.