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Aero-vent balance, MIPS and bright shells all trending updwards
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From new-school Assos to old-school Italian to a new custom SpeedShop Program
The iconic golden trophy was lifted last year by Alberto Contador
All RCS Sport races to draw from same pool
RCS Sport, organisers of the Giro d'Italia, Milan-San Remo, Tirreno-Adriatico and Il Lombardia, has named the 14 teams which will comprise the pool of wildcard candidates for all of its events.
Italian squads Acqua & Sapone, Androni Giocattoli, Colnago-CSF Inox and Farnese Vini, Landbouwkrediet, Project 1t4i, Team Europcar, Saur Sojasun and Team Netapp made the list for the four places available for May's Giro d'Italia.
Only two spots are free for Tirreno-Adriatico, while the one-day events will include seven wildcard teams in addition to the 18 WorldTour teams.
Also in the list are new Pro Continental squads: the Chinese-registered Champion System team, Irish-registered but mainly Italian Utensilnord Named, and Russian outfit Rusvelo and the reinforced Colombia-Coldeportes squad.
The American squad Team Type 1-Sanofi made the cut, but its counterparts, UnitedHealthcare and Canadians Spidertech-C10 either did not apply or did not make the December 31 deadline and will not be eligible for those events.
Out of the running are Cofidis, Bretagne Schuller, Caja Rural, Andalucia, and Belgian squads Accent.Jobs-Willems Verandas and Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator.
The remaining teams will be considered at a January 10 meeting of the RCS Sport wildcard commission.
RCS Sport wildcard candidates for 2012:
Acqua & Sapone
Champion System Pro Cycling Team
Colnago - CSF Inox
Colombia - Coldeportes
Saur - Sojasun
Team Type 1 - Sanofi