The UCI has published a list of teams that have submitted their registration files to secure a WorldTour licence for the 2012 season. Missing from the list of teams who submitted the relevant paperwork by the 1 October 2011 deadline are Garmin-Cervelo and Movistar, in both cases believed to be due to nothing more than administrative issues. Also yet to lodge registration documents is Geox-TMC, which raced this year under a Professional Continental licence.
Under UCI rules, teams applying for UCI WorldTour (1st division) or Professional Continental (2nd division) licence must provide a file including details of budgets, sponsorship contracts, at least 10 signed riders’ contracts, plus other material for new teams. The file is evaluated by the UCI working alongside the auditors, Ernst & Young.
Ten teams are already in possession of a WorldTour licence for 2012, meaning that their registration should be something of a formality. Those teams include Sky Procycling, as well as Radioshack-Nissan, which will be racing under the licence held by Leopard Trek.
Although the combined entity was initially to be known as RadioShack-Nissan-Trek, that fell foul of UCI rules that determine that teams at this level can only have the names of two sponsors in their designation, and it’s the US-based bike manufacturer that misses out.
The other eight teams are AG2R La Mondiale, Astana, BMC Racing, Eusaltel-Euskadi, Lampre-ISD, Liquigas Cannondale, Rabobank and Vacansoleil-DCM.
Seven teams are either renewing a licence that expirs this year, or do not currently hold one but aspire to that status, which gives teams automatic selection for WorldTour races including the Classics and the three Grand Tours.
In the former category are Katusha, Lotto Cycling Project (currently Omega Pharma-Lotto), Omega Pharma-Quick Step (currently Quick Step) and Saxo Bank-SunGard.
Seeking to move up from Professional Continental to WorldTour status are French outfits FDJ and Team Europcar plus what was the Dutch outfit, Skil-Shimano, which now goes by the monicker Project 1T4i, which according to the team stands for “Team spirit, Inspiration, Integrity, Improvement and Innovation.”
That leaves just one brand new outfit applying for WorldTour status this year, the Australian team, GreenEdge. Just 12 months ago an earlier attempt from Down Under to give Australia its own team in world cycling’s top tier, Pegasus Sports, failed when it lost its funding and did not even manage to secure Professional Continental status.
GreenEdge, whose signings include world championship silver medallist and Milan-San Remo winner Matt Goss, is likely to have crossed every ‘t’ and dotted every ‘i’ to ensure its application goes through.
Teams that have applied for UCI Professional Continental status for 2012 are Accent Jobs, Androni Giocattoli, Bretagne-Schuller, Caja Rural, Cofidis, Colnago-CSF Inox, Farnese Vini, Landbouwkrediet, Saur – Sojasun, Spidertech Powered By C10, Team NetApp, Team Type 1-Sanofi, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator and Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling Team.
The registration process for both WorldTour and Professional Continental licences is due to be completed by 1 October, says the UCI, “if no irregularities are brought to notice.”
First-time applicants for a WorldTour licence, or teams renewing such a licence, have their files automatically forwarded to the licence commission.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.