Posted by Editoress on 01/15/13
The Russian-based Katusha has been issued a Professional Continental licence, the UCI announced today:
"Following the UCI Licences Commission decision on 10 December 2012 to refuse Katusha’s registration as UCI ProTour (first division), the team introduced anti-doping measures that have prompted the Licences Commission to grant it registration as UCI Professional Continental Team (second division)."
Katusha was expected to retain its ProTour licence, given that it has the 2012 WorldTour number one ranked rider on its roster - Spaniard Joaquim Rodriguez - however, the UCI Licences Commission, in a move that shocked many, denied the team a ProTour licence renewal, citing "ethical grounds" for the refusal.
The team has applied to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to overturn the decision, but the hearing will not be held until later this month, so the Pro Conti licence will at least allow them start their season in Argentina next week at the Tour de San Luis.
Rodriguez has stated that he will leave the team if they do not receive a ProTour licence.
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