Pellizotti to stay with Androni for 2014 season

The rider, who returned last year from a two-year doping ban, tried to join Astana but contract negotiations fell through

Franco Pellizotti will return to Androni Giocattoli for 2014 after efforts to move to Astana collapsed over the past few months.

Pellizotti, who served a two-year ban for irregularities in his biological passport, was set to join Astana until the team did a U-turn based on its commitment to the Movement for a Credible Cycling (MPCC).

Pellizotti returned from his ban in May 2012, but the movement says its teams may not sign a banned rider during the two years following the suspension.

Androni decided to allow Pellizotti back into the fold. The team said in a press release Monday that Pellizotti’s original contract with the team ran through 2014, but allowed for him to leave the Italy-based professional continental squad if he could move to the UCI WorldTour.

Androni is also part of MPCC, but Pellizotti joined the Italian team before it signed on with the team organization. The team also pointed out that Pellizotti was already under contract.

Officials said Pellizotti would captain the squad with new arrival Johnny Hoogerland. Pellizotti is set to debut his season at the GP Costa degli Etruschi.