Vincenzo Nibali hasn't yet decided whether the 2022 season, in which he will return to Astana, will be the final year of his professional career.
“Whether I am in my final year? I haven't made a decision yet," the 36-year-old told Spaziociclismo.
“Right now I haven't set any goals for myself. I have signed a contract for one year and I want to enjoy the coming season. And after that? We will see.”
And what exactly he means by enjoying himself? Nibali could be planning to do something he's never done before in his career: race all five Monuments, which would include a Paris-Roubaix debut (opens in new tab), and does suggest a ticking off of final bucket list items before it's too late.
Nibali is also expected to ride his home Giro d'Italia for the 11th time, which he's won twice, with no word yet on whether he would then go on to ride the Tour de France as he did in both 2019 and 2021.
“It's a beautiful Giro. Heavy, but also balanced at the same time," Nibali said of the 2022 route, which was revealed earlier this week.
“There are a lot of climbs included in the course, but there are also a lot of sprint stages. The course will ignite immediately. Some journeys look simple on paper, but that can turn out differently in practice. Then I think of the stages to Naples and Messina.”
A stage win in his hometown of Messina may turn out to be too good a note to not bow out on, should Nibali find himself crossing the finish line first on stage five.
Astana, who will be known as Astana Qazaqstan next year, has a raft of enforcements coming into their squad, who will hopefully improve on the 13 victories the team took during a turbulent 2021 campaign.
Miguel Ángel López returns after his unceremonious exit from Movistar, while Gianni Moscon and David de la Cruz also make their way across, replacing the likes of Jakob Fuglsang, Luis Léon Sánchez and the Izagirre brothers.
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