Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project tops UCI's new sporting hierarchy...

Great Britain’s Team Sky is among four teams that cycling’s governing body, the UCI, has confirmed as having secured ProTeam status for the 2011 season. The other three are Rabobank, Omega Pharma-Lotto and Garmin-Cervélo.

The UCI had been expected on Monday to confirm the identity of the 18 teams that would race in 2011 under a ProTeam license, which replaces the former ProTour license, but eventually made the announcement of the initial four teams late yesterday afternoon.

The change of name follows by last month’s announcement of the decision to combine the former ProTour calendar with cycling’s historic events including the three Grand Tours and cycling’s Monuments such as Milan-Sanremo and Paris-Roubaix under a single, unified UCI World Tour.

Other teams will have to wait until 20 November to learn whether they have secured ProTeam status – also described by the UCI as ‘first division’ – which guarantees entry to (and requires the teams to participate in) the UCI World Tour events.

Those teams finishing in the top 15 of the UCI’s “sporting hierarchy,” also published today and shown at the end of this article, will be given ProTeam status so long as they "meet the required sporting, ethical, financial and administrative criteria."

The remaining three places will go to three of the teams ranked between 16th and 20th in the sporting hierarchy, with their sporting values “calculated using results obtained in 2009 and 2010 by the 15 best riders in their 2011 squads, taking into account all the events on all the circuits of the UCI International Calendar,” according to the UCI, which adds: “In addition, the calculation of a team’s sporting value takes into consideration the collective value of the team based on placings in team classifications of stage races on the UCI World Calendar and HC events on UCI Continental Circuits during 2010.”

The UCI also confirmed the identity of 13 teams that have satisfied the criteria for UCI Professional Continental (second division) status, as follows: Androni Giocattoli (ITA), Bretagne-Schuller, (FRA), Caja Rural (ESP), Colnago-CSF Inox (IRL), Europcar (FRA), Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli (GBR), FDJ (FRA), Landbouwkrediet (BEL), Saur-Sojasun (FRA), Skil-Shimano (NED), Team Type 1 (USA), Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator (BEL) and Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling (USA).

The sporting hierarchy confirmed by the UCi is as follows:

  1. Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project
  2. Rabobank Cycling Team
  3. Garmin-Cervélo
  4. HTC-Highroad
  5. Omega Pharma-Lotto
  6. Lampre-ISD
  7. Katusha
  8. Sky ProCycling
  9. Liquigas-Cannondale
  10. Saxo Bank SunGard
  11. Team RadioShack
  12. Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
  13. Pro Team Astana
  14. Movistar Team
  15. BMC Racing Team
  16. Euskaltel-Euskadi
  17. Geox-TMC
  18. Quick Step Cycling Team
  19. Cofidis Le Crédit en ligne
  20. AG2R
  21. FDJ
  22. Saur-Sojasun
  23. Pegasus Sports
  24. Skil-Shimano
  25. Acqua e Sapone
  26. Colnago-CSF Inox
  27. Europcar
  28. Androni Giocattoli
  29. Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator
  30. Veranda's Willems-Accent
  31. Team Type 1
  32. CCC Polsat Polkowice
  33. Bretagne-Schuller
  34. Farnese Vini - Neri Sottoli
  35. Landbouwkrediet
  36. UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling
  37. Team Netapp
  38. Team SpiderTech powered by C10
  39. Caja Rural
  40. Colombia Es Pasion-Café de Colombia
  41. De Rosa-Ceramica Flamina
  42. Andalucia Caja Granada


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.