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Nairo Quintana's Arkea-Samsic get Tour de France invite

Joe Robinson
7 Jan 2020

B&B Hotels–Vital Concept also earn invite as Circus-Wanty Group miss out

Nairo Quintana, Nacer Bouhanni and Warren Barguil will all get the chance to ride the Tour de France this summer as Arkea-Samsic were handed one of the final two wildcard slots alongside B&B Hotels-Vital Concept.

Race organiser ASO announced on Tuesday the final three teams for this year's race that will take to the Nice start line alongside the 19 WorldTour teams, with Circus-Wanty Gobert missing out.

It was an all French affair with Arkea-Samsic and B&B Hotels joining Direct Energie, who had already earned their space by being ranked the first UCI ProTeam (formerly ProContinental) of 2019.

Arkea-Samsic made a series of high-profile signings in the off-season, such as multiple Grand Tour winner Quintana, with the ambition of racing both the Tour and Vuelta a Espana for overall honours.

While the chances of a Vuelta invite seem slim, their spot at the Tour has now been confirmed.

B&B Hotels-Vital Concept's invite sees Belgian team Circus-Want Gobert - formerly Wanty Groupe Gobert - snubbed by the race for the first time since 2016.

The Belgian team will instead have to settle for an invite to the Criterium du Dauphine earlier in the season.

This summer will be B&B Hotels-Vital Concept's first Tour de France since creation in 2018, allowing the likes of Bryan Coquard the chance to race their home tour.

The three French wildcard teams invited to this year's race will join the existing three French WorldTour teams - Groupama-FDJ, AG2R La Mondiale and Cofidis - to make six home teams at the Tour, the highest number for a decade.

This year's Tour will also see the first Israeli team compete with Israel Start-Up Nation joining the WorldTour.

The number of invited teams to Grand Tours dropped from four to three in 2020 after Cofidis earned themselves a WorldTour licence, upping the number of teams in cycling's top flight to 19.

Tour de France wildcard teams 2020

Direct Energie
B&B Hotels - Vital Concept