Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali has confirmed to Cycling Weekly that he will stay with Liquigas in 2010 and not ride for Team Sky as has been widely rumoured.
“I’ve got a contract with Liquigas for 2010 and so I’m going to stay with them for another year,” Nibali told Cycling Weekly.
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“I’ve talked with Max Sciandri about the Sky team and I know it’s a good project. There’s been some problems at Liquigas because there are a lot of stage race leaders, but the team has helped me a lot as I’ve developed and really wants to keep me.
“Sky is a new team and it’s great that a new sponsor like Sky has come into the sport. I’ll be watching how they do next season. My contract ends in 2010 and so perhaps we can talk again in the future.”
It’s believed Nibali was set to be Team Sky’s leader for the Grand Tours, and that he was keen to leave Liquigas because they also have Ivan Basso, Roman Kreuziger and Franco Pelizzotti on their roster. Team Sky boss Dave Brailsford is now believed to be looking closer to home for a rider to lead the team in Grand Tours.
Following his seventh place overall in the Tour de France, Nibali won the GP Camaiore race last Saturday with a solo attack on the final descent. He is targeting a place in the Italian team for the world championships in Mendrisio in September.
Nibali also confirmed to Cycling Weekly that he would take legal action against Amore e Vita team owner Ivano Fanini, who has accused him of working with Dr Michele Ferrari before the Tour de France.
“If Fanini has proof of me working with Ferrari than he should show it to everybody instead of making wild accusations,” Nibali said before the GP Camaiore.
“I’ve denied it all via my lawyers and I’m going to go after him and La Repubblica, the newspaper that printed the story, because it’s not right they make unfounded accusations like that.”
After the GP Camaiore, Nibali headed to altitude in the Dolomites to prepare for the world championships with several team mates, including Ivan Basso.
Basso will ride the Tour of Spain with Roman Kreuziger, while Nibali will ride the Tre Valli Varesine (August 18), the GP Ouest France-Plouay (August 23) and the Giro del Veneto (August 29).