Russian rider Sivakov announces nationality switch to France

The 24-year-old Sivakov said he grew up in France and long-planned the eligibility change with the International Cycling Union (UCI).

“It feels like my home. It would be a dream to race in Paris at the 2024 Olympics for France,” said Sivakov.   -  REUTERS

After racing for the Russian team at the Tokyo Olympics, cyclist Pavel Sivakov announced his nationality switch to France on Friday citing the war in Ukraine as a factor.

The 24-year-old Sivakov said he grew up in France and long-planned the eligibility change with the International Cycling Union (UCI).

“I have wanted to become a French national for some time and had made the request to the UCI, but given what is happening in the Ukraine at the moment, I wanted to fast-track this,” Sivakov said in a statement released by his British team Ineos.

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Seven months ago, he competed for his parents’ country at the Tokyo Olympics and placed 32nd in the road race.

“I was born in Italy and moved to France when I was 1-year-old,” Sivakov said. “France is where I grew up and was educated and where I fell in love with riding my bike which led me to racing.

“It feels like my home. It would be a dream to race in Paris at the 2024 Olympics for France.”

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