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Astana's situation is 'critical,' says Vinokourov

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Astana GM Alexander Vinokourov answering questions

Astana GM Alexander Vinokourov answering questions
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The winning Astana team enjoy the moment on the podium

The winning Astana team enjoy the moment on the podium
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/Getty Images Sport)
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Race leader Alexey Lutsenko (Astana)

Race leader Alexey Lutsenko (Astana)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/Getty Images Sport)
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Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) won the best young rider's white jersey

Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) won the best young rider's white jersey
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alexander Vinokourov (Astana)

Alexander Vinokourov (Astana)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

The future of Astana Pro Team has been placed in doubt after general manager Alexandre Vinokourov revealed that the team has not received funding from the Kazakhstani government since the start of the year, and its riders and staff have not been paid.

In an interview with the Kazakhstani publication Vesti.kz, published on Friday, Vinokourov described the situation as "critical" and said that the Astana team is currently operating by using pre-existing funds.

"We're going to races with our own savings, the lads haven't received their salaries," Vinokourov said, according to Vesti.kz. "The situation is critical. There are 30 riders under contract, we have obligations to them. There are more than 50 people if you add in all the staff, including trainers, masseurs, doctors and mechanics."

Cyclingnews has contacted the Astana team, but they have not yet issued a statement regarding Vinokourov's comments. The team is currently racing across three countries at the Abu Dhabi Tour, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne, Faun Environnement - Classic de l'Ardèche Rhône Crussol and the Royal Bernard Drome Classic this weekend.