UCI announces Pro Continental teams

The UCI today announced 19 teams which were awarded licenses at the Professional Continental level. Of the 21 applicants, the Spanish Andalucia team was not awarded a spot in the sport's second division, and RusVelo's application is still pending. RusVelo is the feeder team for the Katusha squad which was denied entry to the WorldTour.

With the rejection of Andalucia, Caja Rural remains the only Spanish professional continental team licensed. EFE reported yesterday that the team had released its riders to search for other teams, but so far Juan José Lobato, who joined Euskaltel, is the only rider to leave.

Belgium has three - Accent Jobs, Landboukrediet and Topsport Vlaanderen. France has four in Sojasun, Cofidis, Bretagne Schuller and Europcar, while the USA has two with UnitedHealthcare and Novo Nordisk both being renewed.

There are three Italian teams: Vini Fantini, Androni Giocattoli and Bardiani Valvole - CSF Inox, and teams from Germany (Netapp-Endura), Switzerland (IAM Cycling), Poland (CCC Polsat Polkowice), Colombia, China (Champion System) and South Africa (MTN-Qhubeka).

The UCI stated it is waiting for additional information for the RusVelo license, and the commission will re-examine the application in January. Katusha is eligible to apply for Pro Continental status, but is currently planning to fight the UCI's rejection of its WorldTour application in the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

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