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Pavel Sivakov left off Vuelta roster: ‘We are just pawns at Ineos’

Rider unhappy after Spanish snub

19-05-2023 Giro D'italia; Tappa 13 Borgofranco D'ivrea - Crans Montana; 2023, Ineos Grenadiers; Sivakov, Pavel; Crans Montana; Photo by: Sirotti

After the prologue of the Tour of Germany on Wednesday, Pavel Sivakov expressed his discontent regarding his exclusion from Team Ineos Grenadiers for the upcoming Tour of Spain.

In early August, 26-year-old Pavel Sivakov made public his intention to part ways with his team after six years with the British team. He’s set to join UAE-Emirates alongside Tadej Pogačar.

Sivakov then learned he won’t be part of the Vuelta a España, which takes place from August 26 to September 17. He shared his thoughts on the matter with L’Equipe.

“We will say that I had a big blow last week. I was told that I wasn’t going to do the Vuelta, it was really difficult,” he said. “I spent a month and a half at altitude this summer and three weeks with the Vuelta squad. Then we all went together to the Tour of Poland. It went well, very well even. Afterwards, I went straight back to altitude to prepare for this Vuelta. I think I was in the best condition of my season, in my opinion I was even better than before the Giro, and then there you have it.”

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The French rider minced no words about how he felt over the decision. (Sivakov switched his nationality from Russian to French in 2022 following the invastion of Ukraine.)

“I got a phone call telling me it wasn’t going to happen. It was complicated. I’ve been with the team for six years, everyone knows I’m leaving but that’s cycling. We are just numbers, pawns,” he said. “That’s kind of how I see it. It makes us realize that “management” sometimes has to make difficult decisions. I was shot down instantly but I have since pulled myself together. I want to enjoy all the work that has been done this summer trying to do something between now and the end of the season.”

The Vuelta begins Saturday in Barcelona with a team time trial.