The UCI this week announced a raft of changes to the track cycling season, one of which means the Huub-Wattbike team will no longer be eligible to take part in the Track Cycling World Cup, despite having won gold in London in December. The Derby-based amateur team have described the decision as, “disappointing for us and detrimental to cycling as a whole.”
The current UCI Track Cycling World Cup is to undergo several changes from the 2020-2021 season.
The number of rounds in the series will go from six to three, and it will no longer run from October to January but, starting from 2021, from July to September.
The competition will also be rebranded the UCI Track Cycling Nations’ Cup. While this might be a less confusing name considering there’s also a Track World Championships (which will move from March to October), the UCI announcement added: “As the name suggests, participation will be reserved uniquely for national teams.”
That last details is bad news for trade team Huub-Wattbike, who tweeted:
It’s been a frustrating 24 hours for the team. We will be putting a statement out on Monday. In short, it’s disappointing for us and detrimental to cycling as a whole. Maybe beating the French in Paris with David Lappartient watching wasn’t the smartest move #LongLiveDerbados https://t.co/LqVdG3qhi1
— Huub | Wattbike Test Team (@HuubWattbike) June 21, 2019
The Huub-Wattbike team started out in 2017 as Team KGF, four amateur riders outside the British Cycling setup who decided to launch their own team based at the Derby velodrome.
Competing on an annual budget of £15,000, their innovative approach helped them become national champions and Track Cycling World Cup gold medallists.
Former team member Charlie Tanfield has since gone on to win gold for Great Britain in the team pursuit at the 2018 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, while his brother, Harry, won the opening stage of last year’s Tour de Yorkshire and has since moved into the World Tour with Katusha–Alpecin.
In November, individual pursuit world record holder Ashton Lambie signed for the team.