Miguel Ángel López set to leave Astana at end of 2020

MERIBEL FRANCE SEPTEMBER 16 Arrival Miguel Angel Lopez Moreno of Colombia and Astana Pro Team Celebration Col de la Loze 2304m Public Fans during the 107th Tour de France 2020 Stage 17 a 170km stage from Grenoble to Mribel Col de la Loze 2304m TDF2020 LeTour on September 16 2020 in Mribel France Photo by Stuart FranklinGetty Images
Miguel Ángel López celebrates his Tour de France stage win atop the Col de la Loze (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Miguel Ángel López is set to move on from Astana at the end of the 2020 season after six years at the team, according to Kazakhstani press reports.

The Colombian, who finished sixth at his debut Tour de France on Sunday, is set to race at the UCI Road World Championships in Imola this week before heading to the Giro d'Italia in support of Jakob Fuglsang's general classification bid.

According to Prosports.kz, team manager Alexandre Vinokourov said that the Italian Grand Tour will be his final race for Astana and added that team budget restrictions didn't allow them to retain López for 2021 and beyond.

Back in April, the team cut wages for riders and staff by 30 per cent due to the economic impact of the COVD-19 pandemic, while a month earlier reports had emerged that the wages for the start of the season had been delayed.

Astana cited administrative delays as the reason for the late payments, but added that the full 2020 budget had been approved by Kazakhstani sovereign wealth fund, Samruk Kazyna. 

López, who turned pro with Astana back in 2015, finished on the podium at the 2018 Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a España. The 26-year-old's victories during his time with the squad included the Tour de Suisse, Volta a Catalunya, Milano-Torino and two Vuelta stages.

His most recent victory came atop the Col de la Loze on stage 17 of this year's Tour de France, but ended up dropping off the podium on the penultimate day's time trial, shedding 6:17 to eventual race winner Tadej Pogačar and finishing in sixth overall.

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