After what was an administrative delay, both Mitchelton-Scott teams have been confirmed as part of the the 2020 UCI WorldTours.
On Wednesday both men’s and women’s squads were notable absentees when the UCI released the lists of WorldTeams which will compete at the top tier of competition next season. The governing body announcing both applications were ‘under review.’
However, on Thursday the UCI announced both applications had been successful.
“The UCI Licence Commission has granted a UCI WorldTour licence to the Mitchelton-Scott men’s team and a UCI Women’s WorldTour licence to Mitchelton-Scott’s women’s team,” read the governing body’s press release.
According to Mitchelton-Scott the delay was caused by the late submission of a document required for both applications, a tweet explaining that had since been provided. The men’s WorldTeam licence is valid for the period 2020-2022, while the women’s licence last until 2023.
Both squads have had successful years in 2019. Including national championships, the men bagged 35 victories between January and October, finishing the year ranked eighth.
British twins Adam and Simon Yates took nine wins between them, with Simon’s two Tour de France stages standout results.
The women’s team’s 18 wins helped them finish 2019 ranked third, with Annemiek van Vleuten their most successful rider. Her two stage victories in a successful defence of her Giro Rosa title were notable, though her World Championship road race win will live long in the memory.
Next season is the first time women’s teams will be ranked in two tiers, the structure mirroring that of the men’s sport, with WorldTeams the first division and Continental squads forming a second division.
WorldTeam status for both men and women requires ethical, financial and sporting criteria be met, however, the new Women’s WorldTeams brings new requirements. These include a minimum wage for the first time, along with maternity leave, making careers more viable and sustainable for women.
When the new structure was first announced the UCI wanted a minimum of five Women’s WorldTeams, though in the end all eight applications have been approved for the first year.
The men’s squad have been part of the top tier since their creation as Orica-GreenEDGE in 2012. The women’s team began life at the same time as Orica-AIS and was initially a separate entity, however, in recent years the two have grown closer together, sharing their structure.