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Michael Rasmussen and Daniel Foder of Christina Watches - Onfone
Team owner calls team “economically strongest” in Denmark
The Danish Cycling Union (DCU) has approved Christina Watches-Onfone's application for a Continental licence for the coming season, and submitted it, along with six others, for UCI approval. Christina Watches had to submit additional financial information to the Danish federation.
The DCU had ordered the team around Michael Rasmussen to provide full details of its accounts before it would act on their application. On Wednesday, “We received an accounting from Christina Watches-Onfone and thus received all the papers from all the Continental teams and the information is forwarded to the UCI,” the DCU's Jesper Worre told sporten.dk.
He was informed that the accounts were approved only minutes before the deadline. “I think it is regrettable. I do not think there has ever been any doubt that our team can and will ride their bikes,” he said.
The team is financially better off than even Saxo-Tinkoff, Hembo said. “Even compared to Bjarne Riis, we are still the economically strongest team in Denmark.”
He understood the DCU's concern “to ensure that a team doesn't break down in the middle of the season, and I can easily under that the have this requirement. But I do not believe that there has even been any doubt about our economy.”
Team owner Claus Hembo had threatened to either dissolve the team or seek a licence in another country if his team was denied. “There was an opportunity to move abroad, but it was definitely only a stopgap measure because we believe that we are a Danish team. But if opportunities had been that we could either close the team or move it, we would have been forced to move abroad.”
The DCU has now approved and sent to the UCI the Continental licence applications for Team Tre-For, Team Designa Køkken-Knudsgaard, Team J. Jensen-Ramirent, Team Concordia Forsikring-Riwal, Christina Watches-Onfone, Team Cult Energy and Blue Water Cycling.