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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion:
Monday, November 9, 2015

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary

UCI releases names of teams receiving 2016 World Tour and Pro Continental Licenses; Astana included

Here's the UCI's release:

On the basis of the files received by the required deadlines and following their evaluation in collaboration with UCI-appointed auditor EY, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) today announces the registration of the teams listed below in both the first and second divisions for the 2016 season.

Teams registered as a UCI WorldTeam (1st division):

AG2R LA MONDIALE
ASTANA PRO TEAM
BMC RACING TEAM
FDJ
IAM CYCLING
MOVISTAR TEAM
ORICA GREENEDGE
TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN
TEAM LOTTO NL – JUMBO
TEAM SKY
TREK FACTORY RACING

It should be noted that all the above were already in possession of UCI WorldTour licence for 2016 but were nonetheless required to meet the annual registration criteria. Seven other teams applying for a new UCI WorldTour licence will be heard by the Licence Commission in the coming weeks as part of the normal application process.

With regards to Astana Pro Team, the Licence Commission has rendered its decision after the team’s four-month review period during which it was monitored by the Institute of Sport Sciences of the University of Lausanne (ISSUL).

After reading the conclusions of ISSUL’s report, the Commission has found that the team complied with the measures required of it.

Astana

Astana will keeps its World Tour license

A copy of the Licence Commission reasoned decision is available through this link.

Teams registered as a UCI Professional Continental Team (2nd division):

ANDRONI GIOCATTOLI
BORA – ARGON 18
CAJA RURAL – SEGUROS SA
COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS
DELKO MARSEILLE PROVENCE KTM
DRAPAC PROFESSIONAL CYCLING
FORTUNEO – VITAL CONCEPT
FUNVIC SOUL CYCLES - CARREFOUR
NIPPO – VINI FANTINI
ONE PRO CYCLING
ROOMPOT ORANJE PELOTON
RUSVELO
TEAM NOVO NORDISK
TOPSPORT VLAANDEREN – BALOISE
UNITEDHEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL CYCLING TEAM
VERVA ACTIVEJET PRO CYCLING TEAM
WANTY – GROUPE GOBERT

Six teams applying for UCI Professional Continental status have had their application declined in the first instance and their files have been referred to the Licence Commission in accordance with article 2.16.017.

The UCI will communicate the decisions of the Licence Commission concerning the award of further licences during November and December.

Jakub Mareczko wins Tour of Taihu Lake

Jakub Mareczko of Southeast was the final GC leader of China's 2.1-ranked Tour of Taihun Lake.

Final GC after the 9th stage:

  1. Jakub Mereczko (Southest) 25hr 5min 52sec
  2. Andrea Palini (Skydive Dubai) @ 31sec
  3. Marco Zanotti (Parkhotel Valkenburg) @ 41sec
  4. Evaldas Siskevicius (Marseille 13 KTM) @ 48sec
  5. Vitaly Buts (Kolss-BDS) @ 54sec

Upcoming racing:

Starting in mid-January, the races will come at us thick and fast.

First off, will be the women's Tour Femenino de San Luis (2.1), January 10-15.

Then, on the 18th, we'll have two men's stage races, Africa's most important race, La Tropicale Amissa Bongo and in Argentina, the Tour de San Luis. Both are ranked 2.1.

A day later, on January 19th, the Santos Tour Down Under begins and runs through the 24th.

Santos Tour Down Under

The Santos Tour Down under isn't that far away

Tom Boonen back on his bike

Het Nieuwsblad has some good news. After crashing hard in this year's Tour of Abu Dhabi in October and breaking the temporal bone in his skull, doctors had advised the Belgian speedster to stay off his bike for six months. At the time Boonen said he'd be back on his bike much sooner.

And, indeed, you can't keep a good man down. Boonen is back on his bike and may be able to take part in his "Tom Boonen and Friends" charity bike ride on November 28.

Tom Boonen

Tom Boonen at this year's Eneco Tour

Chris Froome to release testing data December 3

Here's the 2015 Tour de France winner's tweet: "As promised, I will be making the results and analysis of the independent testing I did after #TDF2015 available to the public."

Froome is going to do the release through the Esquire UK magazine as he further noted: "Scientists Sports have recently completed their analysis of my tests at the World Cycling Centre in 2007 and the laboratory GSK [GlaxoSmithKline] this year. Full details will be published by Esquire (paper and online), December 3."

The two-time winner of the Tour has been the subject of a lot of criticism and suspicion that he doped to win the race. It will be interesting to see if this puts the questions to rest.

Chris froome

Chris Froome (in yellow) being guided by his team through the 2015 Tour's final stage.

Mitch Docker and Damien Howson renew with Orica-GreenEdge

This news came from the team today:

ORICA-GreenEDGE is pleased to announce Australians Mitch Docker and Damien Howson will continue riding with the outfit into the 2016 season.

Docker, who has signed for his fifth and sixth seasons with the team, is looking forward to establishing himself as a key member of the Classics squad and sprint train team.

“Over the past four years ORICA-GreenEDGE has given me the confidence to develop myself as a key lead out man and to continue to explore and develop my Classics ambitions,” Docker said. “I hope the next two years will continue to see improvement in both of those roles as well as more time to learn from the experience of our team captains, like Matt Hayman, to take the next step.”

“The atmosphere, with the competitive yet free and easy-going Australian mentality combined with a nice mix of straight European approach, makes this team a fun and successful environment to work and spend time in.”

Former world under-23 time trial champion Howson, who signed on for 2016, said he was pleased to get another season to continue his development.

“The team has looked after me really well for the first two years of my professional career and it’s an honour to stay for another year and be able to see further progression,” Howson said. “I think I have coped with the step up (from under-23) quite well and I finished my first Grand Tour this year which was another little milestone that I have been able to complete.”

“I feel I am constantly taking steps forward in the sport and I think three years as a professional is probably an optimum time frame to see yourself at the pointy end of races - whether that is helping the leaders further into races or getting a few results for myself, that’s something I can target next year."

Sport director Matt White is looking forward to the pair's return in 2016.

“Mitch is a crucial around our sprinters and our Classics group – they are the two areas that are most important,” White said. “He will have more responsibility over the next two years now he is starting to be one of the elder statesmen of the team.”

“We have very young sprinters, particularly Caleb Ewan, and we saw during the Vuelta how crucial Mitch was to Caleb’s success there. And Damien, who turned 23 this year, has had a pretty normal progression through his first two years as a pro,” White continued. “He proved at the Vuelta this year that he is up for the standard of the WorldTour and we are going to give him another year to continue that development.”

Mitch Docker
Date of birth: 2nd October 1986 (29)
Nationality: Australian
Turned pro: 2009

Palmares:
- 1st 2014 Giro d’Italia – Stage 1 (TTT)
- 3rd 2015 & 2014 Vuelta a Espana – Stage 1 (TTT)

Damien Howson
Date of birth: 13th August 1992 (23)
Nationality: Australian
Turned pro: 2014

Palmares:
- 3rd 2015 Vuelta a Espana – Stage 1 (TTT)
- 3rd 2014 National Championsips Australia – Time Trial
- 1st 2013 UCI Road Cycling World Championships Under 23 – Time Trial

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