The International Cycling Union (UCI) has excluded the Australian Pegasus Sports team from a provisional list it released today of 20 teams that will contend for a first division, ProTeam licence.

“So, we go Pro Continental,” said Pegasus Team Manager Chris White. “It must have been a sporting level decision, because I know we have everything else in order.”

The UCI ranked its list on sporting criteria, which will award the first 15 teams one of the 18 ProTeam (formerly ProTour) licences. The UCI’s licence commission will further analyse the teams ranked 16th to 20th.

The as-yet-unnamed Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project team incorporating Andy and Frank Schleck tops the UCI’s ranking. Britain’s Sky squad is eighth on the list, and the amalgamated Garmin-Cervelo squad is third.

“After the first 20 teams, if you don’t comply with the sporting criteria,” said UCI’s press officer, Enrico Carpani, “you should not be allowed to get a ProTeam licence.”

The UCI ranked the list of 42 teams based on the first 15 riders’ contracts the teams had to submit to its licence commission by October 22. Teams are required to submit more contracts, up to 23, by December 1.

Pegasus’ top signings so far include Robbie McEwen, Svein Tuft, Robert Hunter, Daryl Impey, Christian Knees and Sergey Klimov.

The UCI plans to release another refined list later this month, on November 20. Carpani warned that the named teams can change between now and when the UCI releases its definitive list.

“It is not final,” he said. “The final decision will be given out on December 10th.”

The UCI also excluded Pegasus – and Astana – in a primary list it released on October 5. Chris White said that it was for a different set of reasons they missed the earlier list and that his team later added the required documents.

If the team truly misses the ProTeam cut, White said that he will re-apply next year.

“Our intention is to be part of the World Tour,” said White, “the long-term goal is to be part of cycling’s first division.”

His desire pleases the UCI, which set out in 2005 to globalise cycling with its ProTour, now World Tour. The Australian team raced as a third division team, Fly V, this year mostly in Australia and the USA. Next year, White will base his team in Belgium to race more European races and seek wild card entry into the top races.

UCI team sporting hierarchy 2011

1 Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project

2 Rabobank Cycling Team

3 Garmin-Cervélo

4 HTC-Highroad

5 Omega Pharma-Lotto

6 Lampre-ISD

7 Katusha

8 Sky ProCycling

9 Liquigas-Cannondale

10 Saxo Bank SunGard

11 Team RadioShack

12 Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team

13 Pro Team Astana

14 Movistar Team

15 BMC Racing Team

16 Euskaltel-Euskadi

17 Geox-TMC

18 Quick Step Cycling Team

19 Cofidis Le Crédit en ligne

20 AG2R

————

21 FDJ

22 Saur-Sojasun

23 Pegasus Sports

24 Skil-Shimano

25 Acqua e Sapone

26 Colnago-CSF Inox

27 Europcar

28 Androni Giocattoli

29 Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator

30 Veranda’s Willems-Accent

31 Team Type 1

32 CCC Polsat Polkowice

33 Bretagne-Schuller

34 Farnese Vini – Neri Sottoli

35 Landbouwkrediet

36 UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling

37 Team Netapp

38 Team SpiderTech powered by C10

39 Caja Rural

40 Colombia Es Pasion-Café de Colombia

41 De Rosa-Ceramica Flamina

42 Andalucia Caja Granada 

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2011 UCI World Calendar

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