ASO announces wildcard teams for Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège
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Monday, February 25, 2013

ASO announces wildcard teams for Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège

by Ben Atkins at 6:14 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Spring Classics, Liège-Bastogne-Liège , Flèche Wallonne
 
Six Professional Continental teams for each race after WorldTour expansion

joaquim rodriguezRace organiser ASO has announced the list of teams that have been invited to ride its two Ardennes Classic races, la Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège. As events in the UCI WorldTour, all ProTeams are automatically invited - which since the Court for Arbitration in Sport (CAS) decision earlier this month that forced the International Cycling Union (UCI) to admit Katusha onto the top table - means that 19 teams are guaranteed a start.

In all likelihood, however, Katusha would have been awarded an invitation to at least one of the races - provided an unfavourable CAS decision hadn’t led to an exodus of its stars - since the team’s Catalan captain Joaquim Rodríguez is the reigning champion at la Flèche Wallonne.

ASO has gone largely local with the wildcards, with the three biggest Belgian ProContinental teams of Accent Jobs-Wanty, Crelan-Euphony, and Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise invited to both; new Swiss team IAM Cycling has also been lucky enough to receive two invitations.

For Flèche Wallonne, ASO has invited Team Colombia and Sojasun, while Cofidis and Europcar - with French star Thomas Voeckler professing a desire to win - get the nod for Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

The races will be run on April 17th and 21st in southern, French speaking, Belgium. Rodriguez will line up as number one in la Flèche, while Astana’s Maxim Iglinskiy will defend his Liège title as the winner in 2012.

19 WorldTour ProTeams - automatically invited
AG2R La Mondiale (Fra)
Astana Pro Team (Kaz)
Blanco Pro Cycling Team (Ned)
BMC Racing Team (USA)
Cannondale Pro Cycling (Ita)
Euskaltel Euskadi (Esp)
FDJ (Fra)
Garmin - Sharp (USA)
Katusha Team (Rus)
Lampre - Merida (Ita)
Lotto Belisol (Bel)
Movistar Team (Esp)
Omega Pharma - Quick Step Cycling Team (Bel)
Orica - GreenEDGE (Aus)
RadioShack - Leopard (Lux)
Sky Procycling (Gbr)
Team Argos - Shimano (Ned)
Team Saxo - Tinkoff (Den)
Vacansoleil - DCM Pro Cycling Team (Ned)

Professional Continental Teams invited to la Flèche Wallonne
Accent Jobs – Wanty (Bel)
Colombia (Col)
Crelan – Euphony (Bel)
IAM Cycling (Sui)
Sojasun (Fra)
Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise (Bel)

Professional Continental Teams invited to Liège-Bastogne-Liège
Accent Jobs – Wanty (Bel)
Cofidis, Solutions Crédits (Fra)
Crelan – Euphony (Bel)
IAM Cycling (Sui)
Team Europcar (Fra)
Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise (Bel)

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