Astana Pro Team (AST)
Translated from the Kazakh language, Astana means capital city. Measured by its surface area, Kazakhstan is the ninth biggest state in the world.
The Astana team rides in the striking Kazakh national colours of bright blue and yellow, offering both sun and shade. The team includes the Italian Vincenzo Nibali, winner of the 2014 Tour de France. Nibali, a stylish rider, coped best of all with difficult terrain of last year's Tour de France. However, in the Italian Fabio Aru and the Dutchman Lars Boom the team has other riders who could win a tour. The strong team also includes some top-class helpers such as Jakob Fuglsang (DK), Michele Scarponi (IT), Dario Cataldo (IT) and Lieuwe Westra (NL).
Shadows were repeatedly cast in 2014/15 by headlines because of doping bans. Until lately, the Astana team faced the possible withdrawal of its licence.