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WorldTour to remain unchanged for 2018, five new teams apply for ProConti status

Three American teams among applicants for Pro Continental status but no teams attempt step up to WorldTour

Joe Robinson
5 Oct 2017

The WorldTour should have a familiar look next season as the UCI announced today that all 18 teams that made up the 2017 WorldTour will be applying for registration for 2018 .

Teams will be subject to checks regarding sporting, ethical, financial and administrative codes but are all expected to be granted their licence.

The announcement that no new teams will be attempting to join the WorldTour will be a relief for teams such as Dimension Data and Cannondale-Drapac who had seen their position come under threat in previous years.

However, thanks to new sponsor EF Education First, Cannondale-Drapac's immediate future is secure, as this their position in world cycling.

In cycling's second tier, five new teams have applied for Pro Continental status, three of them – Hagens Berman Axeon, Holowesko Citadel P/B Araphaoe Resources and Rally Cycling – hailing from the US.

With the Tour of California becoming a WorldTour race, the event has less scope than before to invite teams outside of the top two tiers, hence the rush from the three American Continental teams.

Their applications will be joined by Basque development team Euskadi Basque Country-Murias and Team Vital Concept, fronted by former professional rider Jerome Pineau.

This announcement from the UCI put an end to speculation that ProConti outfit Fortuneo-Oscaro would attempt to make the jump to the WorldTour for 2018 following the signing of Warren Barguil, who won the King of the Mountains competition at the 2017 Tour de France.

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