Thursday, October 06, 2011

WorldTour-licence clear-up

I feel obliged to clear up some of the confusion that's arisen around the publishing of the UCI's list of applications for a 2012 WorldTour-licence:

Contrary to what's being said in various Spanish media this morning, Euskaltel is not guaranteed a place in the WorldTour next year.

The UCI yesterday published a list of the teams applying for a top-tier licence for the coming season. Among eight other teams, Euskaltel are listed to be in possession of a licence for 2012. This does not mean, mind you, that Euskaltel will in fact be a part of the exclusive series. Whether Euskaltel will be a WorldTour - or Professional Continental team next year hinges on the team's ranking position. If Euskaltel finish inside the top 15 of the UCI's rankings it's pretty much set in stone: the team will then be a part of the top tier league (as long as the ethical, financial and administrative criteria are fulfilled). If Euskaltel finish outside the top 15 (they're currently 14th), their possession of a WorldTour-licence for 2012 means practically nothing. Then it'll be up to the UCI's Licence Commission to decide, based on the sporting criterion, which of the teams ranked 16th-20th will form part of the league.

A final decision from the Licence Commission is expected before the end of November. Until then it's anyone's guess.

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