The organisers of the Giro d?Italia have announced the names of the 21 teams invited to this year?s Giro d?Italia but both the Astana and High Road teams and have not been given a place.

The director of the Giro d?Italia Angelo Zomegnan told Cycling Weekly that the two teams and other candidates such as Acqua e Sapone, Credit Agricole and Bouygues Telecom, have not been invited based on four principal selection criteria: ethics, quality, internationality and long-term relationships with race organizing company RCS.

He refused to say which criteria resulted in Astana and High Road not being invited to the Giro d?Italia.

Zomegnan also indicated that the teams would also not satisfy the criteria for other races organized by RCS such as Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo.

The non-selection of High Road is a blow for British rider Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish. Both were hoping to use the Giro d?Italia as key preparation for the Olympic Games.

GIRO D’ITALIA 2008

The 21 teams invited to ride the 2008 Giro d?Italia

AG2R-La Mondiale (FRA)
BARLOWORLD (GBR)
CAISSE D?EPARGNE (SPA)
COFIDIS, le credit par telephone (FRA)
CSF GROUP-NAVIGARE (IRL)
DIQUIGIOVANNI-ANDRONI (VEN)
EUSKALTEL EUSKADI (SPA)
FRANCAISE DES JEUX (FRA)
GEROLSTEINER (GER)
LAMPRE (ITA)
LIQUIGAS (ITA)
LPR BRAKES (IRL)
NGC MEDICAL-OTC (SWI)
QUICK STEP (BEL)
RABOBANK (NED)
SAUNIER DUVAL-SCOTT (SPA)
SILENCE-LOTTO (BEL)
SLIPSTREAM (USA)
TEAM CSC (DEN)
TEAM MILRAM (*)
TINKOFF CREDIT SYSTEM (ITA)

(*) depending on conclusion of the team?s affiliation

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Comment: Shocking decision by Giro organisers
Wiggins and Cavendish must re-think Olympic preparation after Giro snub