In response to 'serious concerns" raised by the UCI over the dual-positives of the Iglinskiy brothers Valentin and Maxim, Astana has said it will undergo its own internal review and has encouraged both riders to help the process by telling-all to the UCI.
By
Cycling Central

7 Apr 2015 - 5:20 PM  UPDATED 13 Apr 2015 - 3:34 PM

"As part of the effort to underline its unwavering commitment to a clean sport, Astana has invited Valentin and Maxim Iglinskiy to contact the CIRC (Cycling Independent Reform Commission) and will certainly implement recommendations contained in the CIRC's report to help all teams in enforcing our own internal anti-doping rules," the team said in a statement, Friday.

Astana said it takes the anti-doping fight incredibly seriously and is already in the process of conducting its own review.

"In the meantime Astana is conducting an internal investigation, and wishes to reassure the UCI and general public that preliminary findings demonstrate the events are of an isolated nature, and that no other member of Astana knew or took part.

"Astana will investigate the events more thoroughly in the following weeks, and will request an audit of its own stringent anti-doping policy to identify whether even stronger measures would be possible and legally enforceable."

It comes as the team faces increasing external pressure from cycling's governing body the UCI, and the cycling public.

Last week the UCI said that the positives of the Iglinskiy brothers raised serious concerns about the team's management. A statement from the UCI described it as "an extremely serious situation and one which raises questions about the management of the team and the ethics which are upheld within it."

And despite the team's public protestations it remains intrinsically linked to its founder, the disgraced cyclist and London Olympic gold medallist Alexandre Vinokourov and has had more than its share of doping problems in the past.

It left both the 2006, and 2007 Tour de Frances in disgrace, and has since seen such decorated alumni as Lance Armstrong, Levi Leipheimer, Andreas Kloden, and Andrey Kaschekin pass through its ranks.

Window-dressing efforts to address its image problem, including an association with the Movement for a Credible Cycling (MPCC), have also appeared increasingly cynical, after the team recently engineered a situation that allowed it to manipulate MPCC rules.

Astana has been a part of the WorldTour since 2007. The team won the Tour de France this year with Italian Vincenzo Nibali.