Battle for 2023-2025 WT licenses

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Everyone present is trying to win or get as good a result as possible in a one-day race. In a stage race, most riders and teams are not optimising for stage results of the flattest stages.

Now, I'd have the .1 races not worth much (and no race that is a certain bunch sprint should have a high ranking), but I would always massively favour race wins over stage wins. Yes, winning Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne should be worth far more than a stage of Baloise Belgium Tour. At the very least 5 times as much, but 9 is not obviously wrong.
At the same time there are a lot of .pro and .1 stage races which have fairly limited parcours such that everybody would be going for them though, like the Quatre Jours, Luxembourg or Denmark. I honestly don't think the average smaller one day 1.1 race like Druivenkoers is worth much more than a stage of the Tour of Belgium, and DEFINITELY not worth more than a grand tour stage.
 
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Yeah Lotto now almost 900 points behind 18th place, that's basically impossible. Think they also have given up seeing their team in Chauny today (not even trying to replace sick riders).

And Israel is a 1000 points behind. Israel obviously has a good team for the Italian races and Total is only riding half of the races Israel is but still... A 1000 points is a ridiculously big gap. I think everything is settled now or Teuns/Woods/Fuglsang have to do insane things the upcoming month.
 
What new pro-continental teams. are stepping up bar Black Spoke next year?
Tudor Pro Cycling (former Swiss Racing Academy) are stepping up.
Q36.5/Qhubeka as well. Velonews just announces some signings, so it should be more or less official


BEAT basically annually announces to step up as well, but it has been postponed again. Corratec also planed to, but I doubt it'll happen.
 
I would argue that with some luck and some underperformance from other teams, Lotto still had a chance at that point, it's only after the WC we've got to a point that race results would need to make no sense whatsoever to save them.
It has of course been theoretically possible but they have had a deficit similar to now (a bit smaller at times) throughout the last three months when I have been monitoring the battle. It has been very difficult for any of the relegation teams to gain anything on each other.

A funny thing is that it can even end with DSM ending on the 18th place even though they have not been involved in the battle. They haven't had the same impetus to have a good final part of the season as Cofidis, Lotto, BikeExchange, Movistar, Arkéa and EF and may be surpassed by all of them apart from Lotto.
 
UCI probably expect another "battle" for the next two years, but with the economic downturn we might see teams folding or stepping down a level, so the UCI might not even get 18 teams even if they want to. I guess we will have to see, but WT licences will certainly not be as licrative of a deal in the future, for sponsors with money to just swoop in and buy, given that they might only hold it until the next relegation.
 
The fight for licenses is obviously over, but the fight for the wildcards might be on again after today. The gap between Israel and Total is now 840 points. Still a lot obviously, but with Total not being able to score a lot of points (apart from Sagan in Worlds) anymore since the competition increased in the smaller races it might be possible for Israel. They still need Strong to keep getting points and atleast one of their hilly guy to finally get some form (and not gonna lie, they have al looked horrible in the last couple of races). They are from now on riding the same races (expect forJapan, Total isn't riding that one), but like I said Total doesn't really have the guys to score big points in any of them with Sagan focussing on Gravel.
 
I don't think Total is worried with it tbf. Being a french team and with Sagan they are guaranteed a place in TdF and any major classic they want so the wildcard is not of much use to them.
They are 100% riding for points. Literally have been riding on the wheels of Israel riders lately and they have added races they normally don't do. They want those wildcards. Obviously it isn't that important for them but it still gives them more opportunities (like riding the Giro or Vuelta).
 
Well Total already took back the points they lost. Back to almost a 1000 point advantage. Woods, Fuglsang and Teuns are nowhere so it is over. There's just no way they're going to do good really good in Lombardia.
 
Jonathan Vaughters commentary: If we have to have relegation in cycling, there are better ways to do it

"It hurts the athletes. It destroys teams. It lowers the value of the sport. And it encourages doping.

I recognize that statement may become a headline, but I’m pointing out that when things get desperate in sport, it often comes at the cost of fair play. It does all these things because it creates widespread instability (just like doping) as sponsors no longer feel safe in the sport of cycling and teams crumble.

Sponsors don’t want to bounce around from team to team in pursuit of a stable platform that will actually compete in the World Tour."
 
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