The WorldTour Points Shuffle
It takes more than points to make it to the WorldTour.
a certain standard that the UCI calls a sporting criterion. In addition to the amount of points a team has, it is subject to an ethical, financial and administrative evaluation by the governing body. This gets tricky – again.
Astana has secured a WorldTour placing and I wouldn’t trust recently retired, but new team director Alexandre Vinokourov as far as I could throw him. In addition to being suspended for blood doping back in 2007, he’s under investigation for buying his win at the 2010 Liege-Bastogne-Liege. Yet, Vino and company passed the UCI’s sniff-test and Team Astana was rewarded with WorldTour status.
Who gets that final WorldTour spot is anyone’s guess. Argos-Shimano seems to be the “cleaner” of the two options as there is no stink on them. Saxo-Tinkoff is a ripe garbage can on a summer day with enough questionable shenanigans that should make the UCI fully investigate this team.
But with anything involved with the UCI I have my doubts of an honest outcome. Historically they look at what benefits them immediately, rather than at what benefits the long term growth of professional cycling. President Pat McQuaid is the king of the short term. This habit goes back to his own racing days where he decided to race under an alias in apartheid South Africa. He was caught and forever barred from racing in the Olympics. He’s not the sharpest tool in the shed, just the sneakiest.
What I will say is that the UCI will pick the team that is most beneficial to them and no one else. That’s how they operate, like an oligarchy. Why should they change now?