RadioShack and Vacansoleil ProTeam licences under further scrutiny
Radioshack, Tour de France 2011, team time trial training
RadioShack-Nissan and Vacansoleil-DCM were not among the eight squads whose existing ProTeam licences were approved and registered by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) on Wednesday.
The two squads, which both currently hold a ProTeam licence enabling them to take part in the UCI's top-tier WorldTour race calendar, will have the continuation of their registration brought before UCI's licence commission on November 20.
In order to register as a ProTeam, squads must meet the UCI's strict criteria in the following categories: sporting, ethical, financial and administrative. All applications are audited by Ernst & Young.
No indication was given by the UCI as to why RadioShack-Nissan and Vacansoleil-DCM were not registered, with the UCI simply saying "The teams Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team and RadioShack-Nissan will
also be heard by the Licence Commission in accordance with article
2.15.071 of the regulations."
Article 2.15.071 of the UCI's regulations outlines the procedure in the event of the UCI deciding it is 'unable' to register the UCI ProTeam rather than giving a reason for refusal. In the event of the UCI being unable to register a team, registration documents are passed to the licence commission for a decision. If the licence commission subsequently refuses the registration, the ProTeam licence is withdrawn but the team in question can appeal against the decision with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). It can also apply for Professional Continental status.
The Luxembourg-based RadioShack-Nissan squad is an amalgamation of the US RadioShack and Leopard-Trek squads, both of which raced with ProTeam licences in 2011. The team management and rider roster is very different than either of the former squads and so could be deemed as an entirely new application. The reason for Vacansoleil's licence being reviewed by the licence commission is less clear.
Eight squads with current ProTeam licences have been re-registered for 2012: Astana, BMC, Garmin-Cervelo, Lampre-ISD, Liquigas-Cannondale, Movistar, Rabobank and Sky.
Squads registering for ProTeam status for the first time, applying for a licence renewal or those that the UCI ranked 16th to 20th in its sporting criteria all have their applications passed to the licence commission for assessment. The teams falling into these categories are GreenEdge, Lotto Cycling Project, Saxo Bank, Omega Pharma-Quick Step, Katusha, Geox-TMC, FDJ, Europcar, Ag2r and Euskaltel-Euskadi.
The UCI also announced on Wednesday the list of 15 teams registered as second-tier, Professional Continental squads. Project 1T4I, formerly known as Skil-Shimano, had originally applied for a ProTeam licence but now appears in the UCI's list of Professional Continental outfits.
Last week, the UCI published the list of teams that had applied for ProTeam licence and had met its 'sporting value' criteria.
Teams registered for 2012 season
Astana Pro Team (Kazakhstan)
BMC Racing Team (USA)
Movistar Team (Spain)
Sky Procycling (Great Britain)
UCI Professional Continental Teams
Accent Jobs-Willems Veranda's (Belgium)
Androni Giocattoli (Italy)
Acqua & Sapone (Italy)
Caja Rural (Spain)
Cofidis, le Credit en Ligne (France)
Colnago-CSF Inox (Ireland)
Project 1t4i (Netherlands)
Spidertech powered by C10 (Canada)
Team Netapp (Germany)
Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator (Belgium)
UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling Team (USA )
Union Cycliste Internationale website