Teams prepare to meet new UCI deadlines for Professional Continental status
Androni Giocattoli and Rock Racing have both stated their intention to achieve Professional Continental status for next season, after they missed out on the International Cycling Union's (UCI) initial round of licence approvals yesterday.
The exclusion of Italy's Androni Giocattoli (formerly Serramenti Diquigiovanni) from the list of 19 Pro Continental teams presented yesterday was a surprise given the team had finished higher than a number of ProTour rivals in the UCI's final 2009 rankings. The squad's principal Gianni Savio told Cyclingnews today that he was confident his team would be added to the list when the UCI makes a final decision later this month.
"I am surprised that for the moment we are not registered [as Professional Continental], but I am sure that we will be registered," he said. "I was very, very surprised to miss out and don't understand why we haven't been registered first time around. I think there was some misunderstanding, I'm sure we'll have no problem [getting the licence]."
Rock Racing issued a short statement on Wednesday that said the team - which is rumoured to become Mexican-registered for 2010 - would endeavour to secure their move from Continental to Professional Continental status for next season. "We're obviously very disappointed but are working diligently to satisfy every requirement that is being asked of us. We are committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure we can race next year," read the statement.
Rock Racing's statement was the first concrete sign that the team had applied for the UCI's second-tier status. Androni Giocattoli had been part of the UCI's provisional list of teams vying for Professional Continental licences released last month.
Neither team, nor the UCI, elaborated on why the initial applications had been rejected, but both outfits now face a race against time to satisfy the requirements of the UCI. The sport's governing body today confirmed to Cyclingnews that the teams would need to meet a series of tight deadlines in the next fortnight to stand any chance of securing a Pro Continental licence.
The teams are required to appeal the UCI's initial decision no later than midday (CET) on Friday and will then have until December 10 to re-submit their licence application to the UCI. The UCI's management committee will reassess the teams' eligibility before it makes a final decision on December 16.
Androni Giocattoli has already moved to satisfy the UCI's requirements. Savio confirmed that he and the team's legal team were already prepared to meet the new deadlines.
"I met with our lawyer today and we're certain that everything is as it should be," he said. "We've re-submitted our documentation and will now wait until December 16; I am sure that everything will be in order."
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