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Astana's in full colour, but financial problems continue

Astana's financial woes seem never ending

Astana's financial woes seem never ending (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

The Astana's cycling team has resolved part of its financial issues ahead of the Tour de France and their jerseys are back to full-colour after Kazakh sponsors paid their bank guarantees. However the team still needs to pay the International Cycling Union (UCI) licence commission to cover riders' wages through to the end of the season.

Astana's had problems when some sponsors failed to make payments and the International Cycling Union (UCI) subsequently threatened suspension of the team's licence without a two-million Euro bank guarantee by May 31. The sponsors met the guarantees last week.

Riders were reported to be without payment. The team protested with some sponsors names lightened on the jersey after stage seven of the Giro d'Italia, May 15

"There are a certain number of conditional terms, parts of these have been met but others have not. So, the UCI continues to follow the situation very, very close," Cycling Union' Press Officer Enrico Carpani told Cyclingnews today.

The UCI asked Astana to deposit money to cover all salaries. "The deadline is today, but so far it has not been done," said union president, Pat McQuaid, today in Paris. "Tomorrow there is a license commission meeting, if Astana does no fix the full problem before this meeting they could lose their license."

"I expect that we will have a team at the start of the Tour de France," Astana team manager Johan Bruyneel said last week. Though, he confirmed the payment problems.

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