Rock Racing: Sevilla exploring other options, heard UCI denied license
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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Rock Racing: Sevilla exploring other options, heard UCI denied license

by VeloNation Press at 6:39 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling

Last week VeloNation reported that the Rock Racing team of fashion designer Michael Ball was not present on the official list of 122 registered UCI Continental teams released by the International Cycling Union (UCI). We confirmed with UCI Chief Press Officer Enrico Carpani that the team's absence from the list did not mean the Rock Racing team was dead for 2010.

"Rock Racing is not on the list of Continental teams the UCI released today," Carpani confirmed to VeloNation last week, "the team's registration for a Mexican Continental license is still pending. The decision will be made by the UCI at a later date."

Earlier this year the UCI's Management Committee refused Rock Racing's appeal for a Pro Continental license. They said in a statement that the decision was taken based on the dossier that Rock Racing presented to them, along with advice from their auditors.

Ball has since applied for a Mexican Continental license, but the UCI has not yet decided whether it will grant the team the license.

Spaniard Oscar Sevilla told El Tiempo that he's been left in the dark, and none of the people in charge of running the team will answer his calls.

"Nothing. Nobody is talking. I called Michael Ball, the team owner, but doesn't answer his cell phone. In the end, it seems like it won't happen, but no one will confirm that news or tell us what is going to happen with the squad," explained a frustrated Sevilla.

Sevilla told the paper that he received a message yesterday informing him that "it appears that the UCI refused the request [for the Mexican Continental license]", so he's started the process of looking a new team.

"It's not easy, since the season is already underway," he explained about finding a new team. "I have some possibilities [for a team] in Spain, but nothing confirmed." He told El Tiempo he's looking for options that would keep him in Colombia because his wife is pregnant, and the most important thing to him is to stay close to her. Sevilla doesn't hold up much hope for Rock Racing to come through with a license, but he said he would like to find a team so he can remain competitive and help younger riders.

Due to Rock Racing's application for Mexican Continental status, UCI rules state that the majority of the riders must be from the country where the team has its registration. It must also have a minimum of eight riders with a maximum of sixteen. If the Mexican Continental license is approved the team will then leave several riders out in the cold. Most likely to be affected are Tony Cruz, Freddy Rodriguez, David Martin, Florentino Marquez, Mauro Richeze, Patrick McCarthy and Jose Enrique Gutierrez.


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