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Katusha CAS hearing set for February 8

Cycling News
January 30, 2013, 12:50,
January 30, 2013, 12:43
Second Edition Cycling News, Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Viatcheslav Ekimov, Joaquim Rodriguez and Denis Menchov hope to find the winning formula.

Viatcheslav Ekimov, Joaquim Rodriguez and Denis Menchov hope to find the winning formula.

  • Viatcheslav Ekimov, Joaquim Rodriguez and Denis Menchov hope to find the winning formula.
  • Race leader Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha)
  • Joaquim Rodriguez and Alexandr Kolobnev will lead Katusha in the classics.

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Rodriguez has offers in place but promises to await the CAS verdict

The troubled Katusha team has confirmed that the Court of Arbitration for Sport will hear its appeal against the UCI's decision to refuse the Russian squad a WorldTour licence on February 8.

CAS turned down Katusha's request from a provisional verdict so it could start the Tour Down Under but the decisive verdict, that could decide the future of the team and if leader Joaquim Rodriguez decides to leave, is likely to come a few days after the hearing.

The UCI Licence Commission turned down Katusha's WorldTour application for ethical reasons, claiming the team had been hit by three recent positive doping cases and had done little to promote an anti-doping culture.

Katusha argued that the team's management had done as much, if not more, than other major teams in the fight against doping, offering to pay the UCI to carry out extra anti-doping controls on the team. They are determined to fight for a place in the WorldTour even after the UCI announced that another team will be forced out of the WorldTour if Katusha wins its appeal.

Katusha has been given a Professional Continental licence but Rodriguez has threatened to quit the team if it does not secure WorldTour status and an automatic invitation to the Tour de France and other major races.

Rodriguez plans for the future

Rodriguez's current contract with Katusha becomes null and void if the team fails to obtain a WorldTour licence. He has been linked to Lampre-Merida, Movistar and BMC Racing Team but suggested his likely destination is elsewhere. In an interview with Spanish website Biciciclismo website, Rodriguez indicated that his preferred destination will surprise many people.

“The team I am most close to signing with hasn’t been mentioned by anyone. But if I were to go for the financial aspect of it, I should stay with Katusha," he told Biciciclismo.

"Others offers won’t be comparable. The team needs me now they aren’t in the WorldTour. But I am at an age now that I want to ride good races. This new contract will be a long-term one and probably the last one I sign.”

Rodriguez has promised to await the final CAS verdict.

"If I stay it’s for my teammates and the staff. I'm not just thinking of myself, I'll find a place in the WorldTour but my teammates might not. It will be very tough for them if I leave. What happens if Mr. Makarov decides to end the team? I feel at home with Katusha. So I’ll wait at least until the CAS verdict before deciding my future.”

orbeas More than 1 year ago
Do you really think that a court based in Switzerland will vote against the UCI ???? It needs to be moved to a country away from the sporting associations that hold up in Switzerland..
Eric Blais More than 1 year ago
The conspiracy continues, probably Lance is involved in JFK shooting. He must be, he lives in the US.
Brownloaf More than 1 year ago
When i picture UCI head quarters, i think of it as a giant nursery. Full of kids running round not really knowing what they are doing there!!!
Cyclepro More than 1 year ago
As you know, the largest doping liars in the cycling history ride and manage for Radioshack. Imagine the conversation in the UCI Committee: - Let's not give the ProTour license to the Radioshack Leopard team for ethical reasons, they destroyed cycling. And Frank Schleck was "poisoned" in 2012. What are we waiting for? New Tour de France 10-years champion from this team? - Impossible, Armstrong and Bruyneel paid participation till 2020; - OK. We have to do something. People thirst for our blood! - Russians? - Yeah, russians!