UCI Denies Katusha's WorldTour Application Without Explanation
The Int'l Cycling Union (UCI) "has rejected the WorldTour application of Russian cycling team Katusha as it names the final ten teams to be granted ProTeam registration for '13," according to NEUE ZÜRCHER ZEITUNG. The UCI "gave no explanation as to why the Russian team ranked second in this year's standings were not granted an automatic spot for next season's leading races." The decision by the UCI means the Russian team will need invitations to take part in the Tour de France, the Giro d'Italia, the Vuelta a España and several top one-day and one-week races in '13 (NZZ, 12/11). REUTERS' Julien Pretot reported the UCI said that "the move was made by the independent licence commission, which makes its decisions on sporting, ethical, administrative and financial grounds." The Katusha team said in a statement, "At the present moment Katusha has no information regarding the reasons for the decision of the UCI. Team management, riders and staff are extremely surprised by the lack of justification for such a decision." Katusha added: "The UCI violates the canons of sports ethics and causes irreparable moral and psychological harm to the athletes before the start of the new season" (REUTERS, 12/11).