Vincenzo Nibali

"Nibali" redirects here. For his brother, also a cyclist, see Antonio Nibali.
Vincenzo Nibali

Nibali at the 2015 Tour de France
Personal information
Full name Vincenzo Nibali
Nickname Lo Squalo (The Shark)
Born (1984-11-14) 14 November 1984
Messina, Sicily, Italy
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 in)[1]
Weight 65 kg (143 lb; 10.2 st)[1]
Team information
Current team Astana
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type All-rounder
Professional team(s)
2005 Fassa Bortolo
2006–2012 Liquigas
2013–2016 Astana
2017– Bahrain–Merida
Major wins

Grand Tours

Tour de France
General classification (2014)
5 individual stages (2014, 2015)
Giro d'Italia
General classification (2013, 2016)
6 individual stages (2010, 2011, 2013, 2016)
2 TTT stages (2007, 2010)
Vuelta a España
General classification (2010)
Combination classification (2010)
1 individual stage (2010)
1 TTT stage (2013)

Stage races

Tirreno–Adriatico (2012, 2013)
Giro del Trentino (2008, 2013)
Tour of Oman (2016)

One-day races and Classics

National Road Race Championships (2014, 2015)
Giro di Lombardia (2015)
GP Ouest-France (2006)
Tre Valli Varesine (2015)


Trittico Lombardo (2015)
Infobox last updated on
4 October 2015

Vincenzo Nibali (Italian pronunciation: [vinˈtʃɛntso ˈniːbali]; born 14 November 1984) is an Italian professional road bicycle racer, considered one of the strongest stage race riders in the world today. He rides for the Kazakh UCI ProTeam Astana.[2]

Born near the Strait of Messina, his nickname is the "Shark of the Strait", "the Shark of Messina" or simply "The Shark".[3][4] His first major win came at the 2006 GP Ouest-France, a UCI ProTour event. However, experts such as Michele Bartoli have said Nibali is most suited to competing in multi-stage races.[5] He is a highly capable descender and bike handler, very good climber and good time trialist. Nibali is an all-rounder. His biggest wins are the 2010 Vuelta a España, the 2014 Tour de France and the Giro d'Italia twice (2013 and 2016), making him one of six cyclists who have won the three Grand Tours in their career. He has also won the 2012 and 2013 editions of the Tirreno–Adriatico stage race. The Italian cyclist is mostly a stage racer, but he's a good performer in classic cycle races as well, having won the 2014 and 2015 editions of the Italian National Road Race Championships, the GP Ouest-France in 2006 and above all a "Monument" of road bicycle racing: the Giro di Lombardia in 2015. He also achieved podiums in Liège–Bastogne–Liège and Milan–San Remo.

Early life

Vincenzo Nibali was born on 14 November 1984 in Messina, Sicily, the son of Salvatore and Giovanna. In order to become a cyclist, he left his hometown Messina and moved to Tuscany at the age of sixteen. For ten months of the year, he lived in the house of his ex-directeur sportif, Carlo Franceschi, in Mastromarco, near Lamporecchio.[6][7]


Early career

Nibali finished third at the Junior World Time Trial Championship in 2002 and also third at the U-23 World Time Trial Championship in 2004. He turned professional in 2005 with Fassa Bortolo. In 2006, Nibali signed with Liquigas. In that year, he won the French classic GP Ouest-France at 21 years of age.[8] He also finished in second position overall of the 2.1 rated Settimana internazionale di Coppi e Bartali, taking the win on the first stage.[9] In 2007, Nibali rode the Giro d'Italia for the first time and finished 19th overall. 2008 saw Nibali finish 10th in Liège–Bastogne–Liège, obtaining also an 11th-place finish in the Giro d'Italia and a 20th-place finish in the Tour de France.


Nibali finished seventh overall in the 2009 Tour de France

2009 saw Nibali record a win in the Giro dell'Appennino where he attacked almost 50 km (31.1 mi) from the finish to win solo.[10] Another victory in 2009 was the Gran Premio Città di Camaiore. He finished sixth overall in the Tour of California and ninth overall in Tour of the Basque Country, before sharing leadership of Liquigas at the Tour de France with Roman Kreuziger. Nibali proved the stronger of the two and finished in seventh place overall, then his best placing in a grand tour.


Nibali wears the leader's jersey at the 2010 Vuelta a España

Nibali began 2010 in great form by finishing first overall in the Tour de San Luis. He was a last minute addition to Liquigas' Giro d'Italia squad following Franco Pellizotti's last minute withdrawal over Blood Passport irregularities. Nibali wore the Maglia Rosa after his Liquigas–Doimo team won the stage four team time trial, later won the 14th stage and after some good climbing through the rest of the race, he managed to finish on the podium finishing third behind his teammate Ivan Basso and David Arroyo. In June, Nibali won the Tour of Slovenia. Later in the season, Nibali won the Trofeo Melinda. Nibali won the Vuelta a España without winning a stage, thanks to consistent high placings on summit stage finishes and the race's two time trials.[11] He had inherited the race lead after Igor Anton was forced to abandon after crashing on stage 14. Though he lost it to Joaquim Rodríguez, he later regained it on the final time trial. This marked his first grand tour victory.


Nibali began 2011 with solid form, taking 5th overall in Tirreno–Adriatico. He also enjoyed a solid classics season, recording 8th place in Milan–Sanremo and 8th in Liège–Bastogne–Liège. Nibali was one of the favourites for the Giro d'Italia, with Ivan Basso not riding, giving him sole leadership of Liquigas. Though he entered the race as a big favorite, he could not match Alberto Contador throughout much of the mountains. He still managed to stay in the top three throughout much of the race. He finished third overall behind Alberto Contador and Michele Scarponi, with Nibali and Scarponi fighting over second in the final week when it became apparent the gap to Contador was too large (Contador was later stripped of the title, moving Nibali up to second).

Nibali was also leader of Liquigas at the Vuelta a España. On stage six, Liquigas orchestrated an escape on the descent into Córdoba, but a miscommunication saw Nibali finishing fourth, failing to take any bonus seconds. He moved to third overall on stage 11, behind Sky duo Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome. Over the Next few stages, Nibali began to chip into Wiggins' lead by taking time bonuses from sprints. However, stage 14 saw Nibali crack on the final climb, putting him out of contention for a podium placing. He finished seventh overall.


Nibali at the 2012 Tour de France

Nibali began the 2012 campaign with second overall in the Tour of Oman, one second behind Peter Velits, winning the queen stage. Nibali finished first overall in the Tirreno–Adriatico after winning stage five. He also won the points classification. In March, Nibali finished third in Milan–Sanremo, his first podium finish in a monument.

On Liège–Bastogne–Liège, he broke away solo when he attacked on the descent of the Cote de la Roche aux Faucons and dropped his main challengers with 20 kilometers to go, but he was passed by Maxim Iglinsky (Astana) in sight of the final kilometer (flamme rouge). He held on to finish in second place.[12]

Nibali chose to focus his attention on the Tour de France, skipping the Giro d'Italia in order to prepare. After a solid first week, Nibali finished fourth on the first summit finish on stage seven to rise to third in the overall standings, sixteen seconds behind leader Wiggins and six behind defending champion Cadel Evans. However, Nibali conceded over two minutes to Wiggins in the time trial on stage nine, where he placed eighth, and slipped to fourth on the GC, behind Wiggins' team mate Froome. On stage ten, Nibali attacked on the descent of the Col du Grand Colombier and linked up with team mate Peter Sagan, but the pair were caught by the Team Sky led peloton. Nibali then accused Wiggins of showing a lack of respect at the stage finish.[13] Nibali went on the attack again on the following stage, which finished with a climb to La Toussuire, and put time into Wiggins and Froome, only for the pair to drag themselves back to Nibali, although he did move up to third overall after Evans lost time. He attacked again on stage 16 on the Col de Peyresourde with only Wiggins and Froome able to chase. They caught him before the summit; Nibali accelerated again but Wiggins closed the gap and the three of them finished together. Nibali lost time to Wiggins and Froome the following stage, another mountain stage, this time with a summit finish and two stages later in the final individual time trial which Wiggins won. Nibali finished third, the only rider to finish within ten minutes of Wiggins and Froome.

Nibali left Liquigas–Cannondale at the end of the 2012 season, and joined Astana on a two-year contract from the 2013 season onwards.[2] The deal has been reported to be a three million Euros a year contract.[14]


Nibali started his 2013 season in good form finishing 7th in the Tour of Oman and winning the Tirreno–Adriatico. In the latter race, he took the leader's jersey off Froome's shoulders in stage 6, where he escaped with Peter Sagan and Joaquim Rodríguez on a short climb with a gradient of 30%.[15] He held off Froome in the final time trial. In April, he won the Giro del Trentino on the final stage featuring a mountaintop finish. He took the lead from Maxime Bouet, who had been the overall leader since the second stage. Nibali powered away on the last Hors Category climb, distancing rivals Mauro Santambrogio and Wiggins, who suffered a mechanical issue, and winning the stage in solo fashion.[16]

Nibali wearing the leader's pink jersey on the final stage of the 2013 Giro d'Italia

Nibali and Wiggins entered the Giro d'Italia as the two favourites for overall victory. Nibali took the leader's Maglia Rosa on stage eight after finishing fourth in the time trial won by Alex Dowsett, conceding only 11 seconds to Wiggins. On stage ten, the first mountain top finish, Nibali finished third behind Rigoberto Uran to extend his lead over second placed Evans to 41 seconds. The rest of the race was severely affected by poor weather conditions. Nibali put further time into his rivals on stage 14, finishing on Monte Jafferau Jafferau, as he and Mauro Santambrogio rode away in freezing conditions, with Nibali allowing Santambrogio to take the stage win; after the disqualification of Santambrogio, positive to Epo, the stage victory went to Nibali. Nibali won stage 18, a mountain time trial, by 58 seconds from Samuel Sánchez, to extend his lead over Evans and Urán to over four minutes. The following stage, scheduled to be the queen stage of the race, had to be cancelled due to snow. Stage 20, the final mountain stage, also saw heavy snow, as Nibali attacked on the final climb to Tre Cime di Lavaredo to win the stage by 17 seconds from Fabio Duarte, with Urán a further two seconds back. Nibali also moved into the lead in the points classification. Nibali safely negotiated the final stage to Brescia to win the Giro by four minutes 43 seconds over Urán, his second Grand tour overall victory. However, as Mark Cavendish collected all the intermediate sprints before winning the final stage, Nibali finished second to the Manxman in the points classification.[17]

At the Vuelta Nibali was vexed as to whether he should chase the red jersey to record his second grand tour in 2013 or reserve his energy for the World Championships to be held just weeks later in his adopted Tuscany. He captured the race lead on stage 4 though losing it on stage 8, he managed to regain it on stage 11, a time trial. He rode well throughout wearing the red jersey for several stages maintaining his race lead through much of the race. Nibali has now worn the leader's jersey more than any other Italian in the history of the Vuelta. He lost his race lead though on stage 19 to Chris Horner. He attacked Horner many times during the final mountain stage on the steep Angliru but he cracked in the end finishing 4th on that stage. He finished 2nd overall in the general classification.


Nibali wearing the yellow jersey at the 2014 Tour de France

After winning the Giro in 2013, the Tour de France became the main objective for Nibali's 2014 season. Throughout much of his season before the Tour, Nibali showed quiet form before the Tour with no race victories and high finishes. He was also criticized by the Italian press after a disappointing Critérium du Dauphiné. On June 28, Nibali became the 2014 Italian Champion with his first win of the year at the national road race championships (Trofeo Melinda).[18]

Nibali then went on to win the 2014 Tour de France. He first secured the leader's yellow jersey on July 6 by winning the 201 km second stage (York / Sheffield, England) of the Tour after breaking away right before the finish. On stage 5, (the cobblestone stage) he gained over 2 minutes over a majority of the GC contenders. He continued to lead the race from stage two through eight, losing it to Frenchman Tony Gallopin in the ninth stage. But he regained it in the tenth stage from Mulhouse to the Planche des Belles Filles after one of his biggest general classification competitors Alberto Contador crashed and abandoned the race, and after catching Joaquim Rodríguez and Michal Kwiatkowski up the final col up the Planche des Belles Filles. He won the stage uncontested and re-donned the yellow jersey on July 14, 2014, Bastille Day in France.[19] Nibali then won stage 13 into Chamrousse after passing Leopold Konig and Rafal Majka near the top. He would continue to show his dominance through the rest of the Tour and on stage 18 into Hautacam he attacked from the early slopes of the climb and he would win the stage finishing over a minute ahead of second place rider Thibaut Pinot. This gave him his fourth and final stage victory. He finished with an excellent 4th-place finish in the final time trial. He went on to win the general classification by 7 minutes and 52 seconds, the largest margin of victory in the Tour in 17 years.[20] The next race for Nibali was on 16 September at the Coppa Bernocchi. He finished in the lead group (18th) after attacking several times during the event.[21]


Nibali (front) attacking with Nairo Quintana (rear) at the 2015 Tour de France

In 2015 Nibali made the defense of his 2014 Tour de France title his priority.[22] His first notable result was 16th in the overall classification of Tirreno–Adriatico. He then participated to the Amstel Gold Race and escaped thanks to a late attack, but was reabsorbed by the peloton and finished 65th.[23] In the La Flèche Wallonne, he tried an attack on the penultimate climb, but it failed and he finished 20th, only 19 seconds off the pace.[24] His first significant result of the year was placing tenth in the Tour de Romandie.[25]

In June, he took part to the Critérium du Dauphiné, in which got a second place in the 6th stage and wore the yellow-blue jersey, which was lost the following day; after that, Nibali became the Italian National Champion for the second year in a row. He attacked during the last ascent and got the better of Francesco Reda and Diego Ulissi.[26]

In July, he won the 19th stage of the Tour de France, from Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne to La Toussuire-Les Sybelles.[27] At the end of the stage Nibali was accused by Froome of unsportsmanlike behavior for attacking whilst Froome's bicycle had a brief mechanical problem 58 km from the finish.[28][29] It is not known whether Nibali was aware of the problem, since there was no communication from Radio Tour about the incident (as later stated by Astana manager Alexandre Vinokourov).[30] Television replays showed "Nibali twice glancing over his shoulder before accelerating away."[31] He finished the Tour in 4th place overall in the general classification, 8 minutes and 36 seconds down on the winner, Chris Froome.[32]

Nibali also started the Vuelta a España, where he shared the leadership of Astana with Fabio Aru, the eventual winner of the Vuelta.[33][34] On the second stage, however, Nibali was caught up in a large crash and was forced to chase hard to return to the peloton. During the chase he held on to the team car, driven by the team's directeur sportif, Alexander Shefer, and was pulled up towards the main group. Both Nibali and Shefer were disqualified from the race following the stage, with the team also fined.[35] The race director stated that he lamented the rider's "regrettable attitude".[36] In Autumn he has won Trittico Lombardo, taking solo victories in Coppa Bernocchi and Tre Valli Varesine and placing second in Coppa Agostoni. In October he won his first Monument, the Giro di Lombardia, attacking on the descent of Civiglio, the penultimate climb, and arriving solo ahead of Daniel Moreno and Thibaut Pinot.


Nibali at the 2016 Giro d'Italia

In February Vincenzo Nibali won the queen stage, finishing on the Green Mountain, and the overall classification at the Tour of Oman.[37]

Preparing for the Giro d'Italia, one of the two main targets of the season, he raced the Italian one-day race Strade Bianche, the stage race Tirreno-Adriatico, concluded at the 6th position overall, conditioned by the cancellation of the queen stage, and the Milan-Sanremo where he tried an attack on the descent from the Poggio but was caught by the peloton.

He returned to races in April at the Giro del Trentino, where he demonstrated a bad condition and finished far from the winner Mikel Landa. The last race before the Giro was the Liège-Bastogne-Liège, the most important of the Ardenne's classics, concluded more than two minutes behind the winner after being distanced on the Côte de Saint Nicolas.

Additionally he won his second Giro d'Italia, as well as a stage in that race. His Giro win was a comeback from losses suffered early in the race, he did not move into the pink jersey until the penultimate day.

Nibali's main target of the season was the Olympic Road race. Nibali bridged across to the leading 6 man group on the penultimate descent of the Vista Chinesa circuit with team mate Fabio Aru, and on the final climb of the race he broke clear with Rafał Majka and Sergio Henao. However, Nibali and Henao crashed out of the race on the final descent during the Olympic Road race, with Nibali suffering a broken collarbone.[38]

Personal life

Nibali moved to Lugano in the spring of 2012 with his girlfriend. The couple got married in October 2012[39] and have a daughter.

Nibali has a younger brother, Antonio, who is also a racing cyclist, and who turned professional in 2014 to ride for the Marchiol-Emisfero team in Italy.[40]

Career achievements

Major results

6th Milano–Torino
1st GP Ouest-France
2nd Overall Settimana internazionale di Coppi e Bartali
1st Stage 1
3rd Overall Eneco Tour of Benelux
4th Gran Premio di Chiasso
8th Overall Post Danmark Rundt
8th Overall Tour de Pologne
1st GP Industria e Artigianato di Lanciano
1st Giro di Toscana
1st Trofeo Città di Borgomanero
2nd Overall Tour of Slovenia
1st Stages 3 & 4
1st Points classification
5th Trofeo Sóller
6th Overall Circuit de la Sarthe
6th Memorial Marco Pantani
8th Overall Giro del Trentino
1st Young rider classification
1st Overall Giro del Trentino
1st Stage 3
3rd Overall Settimana internazionale di Coppi e Bartali
8th Overall Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana
8th Gran Premio Industria e Commercio di Prato
10th Liège–Bastogne–Liège
1st Giro dell'Appennino
1st Gran Premio Città di Camaiore
5th Gran Premio Miguel Indurain
5th Klasika Primavera
5th GP Industria & Artigianato di Larciano
6th Overall Tour of California
6th Overall Tour de France
7th Overall Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré
9th Overall Tour of the Basque Country
10th Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
1st Overall Vuelta a España
1st Combination classification
1st Stage 20
1st Overall Tour de San Luis
1st Stage 4
1st Overall Tour of Slovenia
1st Stage 3
1st Trofeo Melinda
3rd Overall Giro d'Italia
1st Stages 4 (TTT) & 14
1st Azzurri d'Italia classification
3rd Overall Vuelta a Burgos
5th Giro di Lombardia
5th Giro dell'Emilia
8th Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
2nd Overall Giro d'Italia
1st Stage 16 (ITT)
5th Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
7th Overall Vuelta a Espana
8th Liège–Bastogne–Liège
8th Milan – San Remo
9th Gran Piemonte
9th Classica Sarda
10th Giro dell'Emilia
1st Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
1st Points classification
1st Stage 5
1st Overall Giro di Padania
1st Mountains classification
1st Points classification
1st Stage 4
2nd Overall Tour of Oman
1st Stage 5
2nd Liège–Bastogne–Liège
3rd Milan – San Remo
3rd Overall Tour de France
4th Overall Tour de San Luis
5th National Road Race Championships
8th La Flèche Wallonne
9th Milano-Torino
1st Overall Giro d'Italia
1st Stages 14, 18 (ITT) & 20
1st Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
1st Overall Giro del Trentino
1st Mountains classification
1st Stage 4
2nd Overall Vuelta a España
1st Stage 1 (TTT)
Held after Stages 2, 4–7, 11–18
3rd Overall Vuelta a Burgos
4th World Road Race Championships
5th UCI World Tour
7th Overall Tour of Oman
7th Gran Premio della Costa Etruschi
10th Overall Tour de San Luis
1st National Road Race Championships (Trofeo Melinda)
1st Overall Tour de France
1st Stages 2, 10, 13 & 18
Held after Stage 13
5th UCI World Tour
5th Overall Tour de Romandie
7th Overall Critérium du Dauphiné
10th Tour of Almaty
1st National Road Race Championships
1st Giro di Lombardia
1st Coppa Bernocchi
1st Tre Valli Varesine
2nd Coppa Ugo Agostoni
3rd Memorial Marco Pantani
4th Overall Tour de France
1st Stage 19
Combativity award Stage 4
5th Gran Premio Industria e Commercio di Prato
9th Overall Abu Dhabi Tour
10th Overall Tour de Romandie
1st Overall Giro d'Italia
1st Stage 19
1st Overall Tour of Oman
1st Stage 4
1st Stage 1 (TTT) Giro del Trentino
4th Overall Abu Dhabi Tour
6th Overall Tirreno–Adriatico
Combativity award Stage 7 Tour de France

Grand Tour general classification results timeline

Grand Tour 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Pink jersey Giro 19 11 3 2 1 1
Yellow jersey Tour 20 6 3 1 4 30
red jersey Vuelta 1 7 2 DSQ

WD = Withdrew; IP = In Progress


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  13. Retrieved 13 July 2012. Missing or empty |title= (help)
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Wikimedia Commons has media related to Vincenzo Nibali.
Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Alex Zanardi
Italian Sportsman of the Year
2013, 2014
Succeeded by
Gregorio Paltrinieri
Preceded by
Jamaica Usain Bolt
Gazzetta dello Sport
Sportsman of the Year

Succeeded by
Jamaica Usain Bolt
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