Katusha WorldTour licence appeal upheld by CAS

Knock-on effect likely with UCI previously telling road.cc that one team would drop down if Katusha won

by Simon_MacMichael   February 15, 2013  

Katusha - Rodriguez, Ekimov and Menchov (source Katusha)

Katusha has won its appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the decision late last year of the UCI's Licence Commission not to award it a UCI WorldTour licence for the 2013 season. The full reasons behind the CAS decision will be relaeased in the coming weeks, but the effect is that Katusha will be registered as a WorldTour team for this season.

Reacting to the news, team owner Igor Makorov, the energy billionaire who is also president of the Russian Cycling Federation and a member of the UCI's management board, said: "We can confidently say, that the whole world’s sports community followed the situation of Katusha Team during the last weeks.

"Katusha Team received a lot of sympathy and support out of different circles: sports officials and the trustees of the Russian Global Cycling Project as well as famous athletes, mass-media and fans.

"On behalf of both, Katusha Team and the whole Project I would like to express our deep gratefulness to all, who sincerely empathized, hoped and believed that the justice will be restored!

"This CAS decision is absolutely objective and justified. This proves once again the impartiality of the supreme juridical body of the world of sports."

In a brief press release issued this morning, the giverning body said: "The UCI will now evaluate the consequences of this ruling and will communicate further in coming days, as soon as such evaluation has taken place."

The Russian team's readmission to the WorldTour will have a knock-on effect, with the UCI having previously told road.cc that in the event of Katusha winning at CAS, several teams that had already been granted a WorldTour licence would have to have their applications scrutinised again, since there can only be 18 WorldTour teams.

However, that could potentially result in legal action on the part of whichever team was forced to drop out, particularly more than a month into the season.

The decision also has ramifications for race organisers. Last month, Katusha failed to get a wild card entry for the Giro d'Italia, but with its WorldTour status regained, it has a right, as well as an obligation, to participate in all WorldTour races.

While it was given wild card entry to Milan-Sanremo and, later in the season, the Giro d'Italia, it also missed out on a place at Tirreno-Adriatico, and reacting to news of the CAS decision on Twitter, Michele Acquarone of organisers RCS Sport said "So, @katushacycling is back. And now? What a big mess! In three weeks we are supposed to run the @TirrenAdriatico..."

There has been speculation in recent days that Jouaquim Rodriguez, who finished the 2012 season as the world's number-one ranked rider, might head to Lampre with several team mates if Katusha lost its appeal. That prospect appears to have receded with today's decision.

The Licence Commission had made the shock decision not to award Katusha a WorldTour licence on what the Russian team initially claimed were financial grounds, although the UCI has confirmed that ethical reasons lay behind it.

While the Licence Commission is independent of the UCI's management, today's CAS decision will be widely viewed as a further dent in the credibility of the governing body.

Today's statement from CAS confirming its decision says, in full:

Lausanne, 15 February 2013 - The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has upheld the appeal filed by Katusha Management SA (Katusha) against the International Cycling Union (UCI) in relation to Katusha’s application for a license to participate in the UCI World Tour 2013 season.
 
Further to an investigation by the Auditor appointed by the UCI, the UCI Licensing Commission issued a decision on 10 December 2012 in which it refused Katusha’s application for the UCI World Tour 2013 season. On 20 December 2012, Katusha filed an appeal at the CAS against such decision requesting that it be set aside and that Katusha be registered as a UCI ProTeam for the 2013 season. On 14 January 2013, the UCI has granted the Continental licence to the team.
 
A CAS hearing was held on 8 February 2013 during which the parties and their representatives were heard by the CAS Panel in charge of this matter: Professor Luigi Fumagalli (Italy), President of the Panel, Mr Luc Argand (Switzerland) and Mr Michele Bernasconi (Switzerland).
 
In its deliberations following the hearing, the CAS Panel did not reach the same conclusions as the UCI Licensing Commission and decided to uphold the appeal. According to the CAS decision, the application of Katusha Management SA to be registered as a UCI ProTeam for the season 2013 of the UCI World Tour is granted.
 
In view of the urgency of the matter, the Panel has issued its decision today, without the grounds, which will be issued in writing in a few weeks.

 

 

25 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

What a f***ing farce.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [3123 posts]
15th February 2013 - 11:21

9 Likes

F***ing UCI. Useless, embarrassing, shameful.

cavasta's picture

posted by cavasta [204 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:01

12 Likes

Aside from the farce-ness of this, can anyone tell me why they're called 'Katusha' but their jerseys say 'Katiowa'?

posted by andyp [865 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:03

6 Likes

Katusha was a devastatingly effective rocket launcher used by the Russians during WWII. Just the sound of these things launching their deadly salvo was enough to scare the s**t out of the Nazis. 'Katiowa', I'm guessing, is the Russian spelling of 'Katusha'.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katyusha_rocket_launcher for more details.

cavasta's picture

posted by cavasta [204 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:13

6 Likes

Here's a crazy idea, WTF can't they have 19 teams? . Have UCI ever given a solid reason why Kat got dropped in the 1st place?

posted by Dog72 [108 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:14

10 Likes

andyp wrote:
Aside from the farce-ness of this, can anyone tell me why they're called 'Katusha' but their jerseys say 'Katiowa'?

Also, see here: http://forum.cyclingnews.com/showthread.php?t=5884

cavasta's picture

posted by cavasta [204 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:16

7 Likes

andyp wrote:
Aside from the farce-ness of this, can anyone tell me why they're called 'Katusha' but their jerseys say 'Katiowa'?

It's Cyrrilic script, not Roman - Катюша

It's the diminutive of Ekaterina, so Katusha translates as Katy or Cathy etc.

Katusha was title heroine of a patriotic song during WW2, and it was after her that the rocket launcher was named.

You'll almost certainly have heard the tune before. There's an MP3 of it here:

http://www.marxists.org/history/ussr/sounds/lyrics/katyusha.htm

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [8042 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:18

6 Likes

Simon_MacMichael wrote:
It's the diminutive of Ekaterina, so Katusha translates as Katy or Cathy etc.

The result is that there's a pro team called Katy Smile

cavasta's picture

posted by cavasta [204 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:20

8 Likes

Simon_MacMichael wrote:
You'll almost certainly have heard the tune before. There's an MP3 of it here:

http://www.marxists.org/history/ussr/sounds/lyrics/katyusha.htm

What an excellent website! Thanks for that. Those soviets knew a thing or two about writing and belting out some cracking tunes. I've got a double cd of the Red Army choir - magnificent stuff.

cavasta's picture

posted by cavasta [204 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:31

8 Likes

cheers. Been bugging me for aeons, that.

posted by andyp [865 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:39

7 Likes

OT but this thread takes me back to when I was briefly learning Russian in 2001 and the main character in the course book, Ivan, talking about his job.

Whereas in a French text book, Monsieur Lenoir might be a "boulanger" or in an Italian book Signor Bruno an "giornalista," our Russian hero proudly declared his profession as "beez-neez-mannn!"

I think that says a lot about the Russia of the time Wink

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [8042 posts]
15th February 2013 - 12:54

10 Likes

cavasta wrote:
Simon_MacMichael wrote:
It's the diminutive of Ekaterina, so Katusha translates as Katy or Cathy etc.

The result is that there's a pro team called Katy Smile


I think I saw a documentary about it on Dave (actually it was on its sister channel, Yesterday, but until they rename it Sally that ruins the joke.)

On the topic of this latest UCI clusterf*ck, I believe only one course of action makes sense anymore .

posted by ubercurmudgeon [168 posts]
15th February 2013 - 13:13

7 Likes

surely you'd imagine that the UCI would be forced to rewrite its rules re WorldTour team selection after this debacle.

Good to see CAS doing the right thing here, how can the IOC express confidence in Pat and UCI, just utterly incomprehensible.

posted by Metjas [283 posts]
15th February 2013 - 13:13

9 Likes

Metjas wrote:
surely you'd imagine that the UCI would be forced to rewrite its rules re WorldTour team selection after this debacle.

Yes, while McQuaid et al weren't involved in the decision, they are responsible for the way the process works.

Imagine if Barcelona or Chelsea were told weeks before the Champions League started that they couldn't take part?

Then took it to CAS and won while the first round was under way?

And Celtic or Valencia, say, were told they'd have to make way?

Slightly different situation because the Champions league is a season-long competition, but you get the point.

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [8042 posts]
15th February 2013 - 13:31

9 Likes

their jerseys say 'Kaтюшa' in Russian.
It is a pet name for Catherine.

posted by Kolovrat [1 posts]
15th February 2013 - 13:54

9 Likes

I really do dispair with the UCI they make FIFA look intelligent D Oh

posted by wwfcb [67 posts]
15th February 2013 - 14:01

8 Likes

Good news. I was fearing the Red Army would start rolling in from the other side of the iron curtain any day now, on bicycles of course.

Charlie Horse

posted by ch [100 posts]
15th February 2013 - 14:10

9 Likes

UCI - I know what the C stands for!

'It's the closest you can get to flying'
Robin Williams response when asked why he enjoyed riding so much

posted by Simmo72 [301 posts]
15th February 2013 - 14:50

10 Likes

Well I never. When I am rich enough to bankroll a Pro team, I'm going to call them Nyeeeow Boom. Military noises is where it's at.

arrieredupeleton

posted by arrieredupeleton [551 posts]
15th February 2013 - 15:28

8 Likes

I knew this was going to happen. Katusha had a very good case, UCI are useless are per. Now its going to be lucky dip to see who goes back down.

Argos are the favourites in my book

Gkam84's picture

posted by Gkam84 [8825 posts]
15th February 2013 - 15:46

11 Likes

I'm sure if UCI try and throw out another current WorldTour team to get back to 18, we'll see more legal wrangling, and less money available that the UCI should be spending on promoting cycling - no doubt some refamiliarization required with the latter concept...

posted by Metjas [283 posts]
15th February 2013 - 16:49

8 Likes

About Mid Nov 2012 , UCIless announced 15 Teams that were to be Pro World Teams in 2013 !
On what basis was this decided ? You will see that UCIless said it was as a result of the Licensing commission , so WHY , did the UCIless decide to withdraw Katusha's reg. ? It would appear that phat mc splat , has issues with the Russian ?

What is needed now is for the UCI Executive , to call in the Auditors and determine the expenses created by this Personal Vendetta ! When this is decided , phat can put his hand in his pocket , or hit the road ! This is another example of the criminal waste of UCI Members contributions. Furthering the mismanagement of UCI , by the aigle tag team duo , is their attempt to attack Ashenden , for revealing the defects in the Bio Passport , which WADA has also highlighted during the time of the " UCIIC " , now derailed as it sought the truth .

Makarov should Immediately call an Extraordinary Meeting of UCI Executive , present the evidence and depose the aigle tag team duo , before they create more Mayhem !

This year there will have to be 19 Pro World Teams , since there would be an impossible choice to make regarding which Team should be DUMPED , through no fault of any , other than one Irish delinquent ! Perhaps the Grand Tours could live with 8 man teams but that will require the Tour Owners to show a degree of Latitude ?

Skippy(advocate for "Disabled / Para Sport")@skippydetour. blogging as skippi-cyclist.blogspot & Parrabuddy.blogspot currently on the road with ProTour Grand Tour Events .

skippy's picture

posted by skippy [383 posts]
15th February 2013 - 20:29

7 Likes

I think these guys use the same butchers as Bertie Devil

Pastaman

posted by pastaman [213 posts]
15th February 2013 - 22:29

8 Likes

Just how many inept cock ups does the UCI congress need to endure before they invite Pat out the door?

Sudor

posted by Sudor [181 posts]
15th February 2013 - 22:42

9 Likes

Open Canyon style. Big Grin

posted by bendertherobot [274 posts]
15th February 2013 - 23:45

7 Likes