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by Shane Stokes
August 8, 2017
In today’s Daily News Digest: Sagan takes photo-finish victory on stage one of the BinckBank Tour; Contador announces he will retire after Vuelta a España; Hansen to ride Vuelta a España after all, will begin 19th consecutive Grand Tour; Gilbert extends for two years with QuickStep, targets victory in San Remo and Roubaix; Trentin signs two-year deal with Orica-Scott; Haas heads to Katusha-Alpecin for 2018 and 2019 seasons; Cort Nielsen to move from Orica-Scott to Astana; Giro d’Italia 2018 to begin with three stages in Israel; Canadian track rider O’Brien out of intensive care; Walmart heirs’ fund becomes majority shareholder in Rapha; Shimano teases new footwear prior to Eurobike; Video: A day in the life of Warren Barguil
Double Vuelta a España stage winner Magnus Cort Nielsen has agreed a two year contract with the Astana team, and is moving to the squad with the aim of shining in the Classics. He is currently with Orica-Scott, but will begin his new role in January 2018.
“Joining Astana next season is an exciting challenge for me,” he said. “I hope I will have a chance to show my ability in the big Classic races, and, of course, also help the team in the Grand Tours. There is already a talented group of Danish riders in the team and I look forward to riding with them and the rest of the guys in 2018. I would like to thank everybody at Orica-Scott, who helped me to develop as a rider over the last three seasons, I have really enjoyed my time there and made some great friends.”
The Dane is an all rounder, as shown by his results. Aside from the two stage victories in last year’s Vuelta, he won this year’s Clasica de Almeria and took a stage in the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana. More recently he was second in the Prudential RideLondon – Surrey Classic.
The team’s general manager Alexandr Vinokurov is confident the 24-year-old will slot in well. “Astana continues the stretching of its positions for the spring Classics season, and I am sure Magnus can be a rider who will help us,” he stated.
“The combination of endurance and powerful finishing sprint is a recipe of success in the Classic races. Beside, in the last season Magnus Cort proved he is able to win Grand Tour stages and to support team leaders in his fight for the general classification in the same time. I am happy Magnus will become a part of Astana.”