The new relegation system bought many changes to the cycling world as we know it. One of the main concern which is highlighted by many teams is that in the year 2023, only 18 teams will be allowed to compete at the WorldTour. The WorldTour licenses will be allotted for a duration of 3 years. At the end of the said period, every team wishing to reappear will have to apply for the license again.
This change is not sitting well with many teams. For instance, team BikeExchange-Jayco recently voiced their concerns. The team was focusing on the ongoing Vuelta a España. Hence, They missed their chance to tally up their score by participating in the Maryland Cycling Classic and Tour du Doubs.
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Although the team is fighting off Lotto Soudal and Movistar from overtaking their place on the charts, still the two races that they have missed provided a good opportunity to steal some points. BikeExchange-Jayco currently sits at the 17th spot while Movistar is hardly making the cut at 18th place. If Enric Mas manages to achieve a podium win, the tables will turn for Movistar.
BikeExchange-Jayco is not in favor of the new relegation rules. They believe that all the teams should be allowed to compete if they are moving on with their own budgets. The team director Matt White spoke his heart out to the media saying:
I don’t agree with the system in general
He is asking questions but there seem to be no answers:
If there are 20 teams with the budget to join the WorldTour, why are we removing teams? If you look at the last 10 years, we’ve struggled to keep enough teams in the WorldTour, and for the first time that I can ever remember we’ve got 20 teams who have the budget to be a viable addition to the WorldTour. So why are we keeping teams out?
The UCI selection criteria is not all about the financial position. There are many other factors which are important when it comes down to selection. The team’s ethical profile is looked into. Moreover, the administrative criteria is weighted along with the organizational criteria. And now, if there are more than 18 teams applying, they will also be subjected to the ‘sporting criterion’.
So many rules have made the teams call out at the administrative system. They feel that whole of the system needs to be repaired. White said to the media while voicing his concerns:
Finishing sixth on the hardest stage of the Tour de France gets you zero points. And here they’re paying the top 30. So yeah, the system needs an overhaul. It’s very heavily weighted on the one-day races
Many riders are missing out on the upcoming World Road Race Championships due to their pursuit of fetching more points. While Jumbo-Visma remains safe by sitting at the top of the charts with a score of 35062, Lotto Soudal is not able to enjoy that previlidge. The team is sitting at the bottom of the top 19 with a score of just 13847. They are under pressure because only the top 18 will get the license.
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Moreover, rumors are that Spain might not send out a team to the upcoming Championship at all. One of the top countries in cycling being absent from the tour does not sit well with many people. Maybe Spain will send a reduced team after all.
Featured Image Via YouTube/ Team BikeExchange-Jayco