Oleg Tinkov joined his Tinkoff-Saxo squad in the Middle East for the early-season racing at the Dubai Tour and the Tour of Qatar. Cyclingnews caught up with Russian businessman for a video version of his regular blog.
True to character, Tinkov was not afraid to speak his mind about his team’s finances following the economical crisis in Russia, about his new Classics team leader Peter Sagan and about Alberto Contador's Giro-Tour double. He also gave his opinion on how cyclists and directeur sportif should be punished for doping offenses, suggesting riders and staff should be allowed back in the sport after a first offence but banned for life if they commit a second offence.
"We are looking forward to having lots of wins, important wins," Tinkov said. "Our team strategy is not about to win, it's about to win the most important races."
Tinkov also spoke about Lance Armstrong's recent interview with the BBC News where the Texan said if he were racing in 2015, he would not dope again. "That means that times are changing," Tinkov said. "I think it's a good sign."
He went on to speak about how the UCI and the License Commission handled Astana's WorldTour licence review, after a series of riders from the Kazakh organization tested positive.
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Oleg Tinkov created his business empire by selling jeans he bought at a training camp as a junior. He now owns the Tinkoff-Saxo team and is never afraid to speak his mind, be it about team leader Alberto Contador, Tour de France rivals Team Sky and especially about how professional cycling is managed.
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