Giro d'Italia 2016 winner, Vincenzo Nibali(

Giro d’Italia 2016 winner, Vincenzo Nibali(

Newly crowned Giro d’Italia winner, Vincenzo Nibali might be headed to the middle east next season. The rumour mill is rife about a new team forming in Bahrain with the Italian champion’s involvement.

Apparently, Nibali and his agents have met with Darkan Mangeldiev, the head of the Astana team project and the Kazakhstan Cycling Federation after the Giro d’Italia ended in Turin on Sunday. However, it seems this was more to celebrate yet another Grand Tour victory for Astana and agree that Nibali will ride the Tour de France as vital preparation for the Rio Olympic road race, rather than target overall victory.

Nibali is ready to ride in support of Fabio Aru at the Tour de France in exchange for the Sardinian’s support at the Olympics and an amicable goodbye.

Astana manager Alexander Vinokourov revealed he was still hopeful that Nibali could decide to stay at Astana, but it seems that not even a substantial increase in Astana’s offer will stop Nibali from opting to move on and becoming the absolute team leader at the Bahrain Cycling Team.