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“We’d love to take that step next year. We have let the UCI know that we have an interest. At the end of the day it’s up to them and the licencing commission,” 

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03.10.2015 @ 06:52 Posted by Joseph Doherty

Despite missing the August 1 deadline for WorldTour applications, MTN-Qhubeka, who will be known as Team Dimension Data in 2016, are still keen to make the leap next season after making some high profile signings.

 

“We’d love to take that step next year. We have let the UCI know that we have an interest. At the end of the day it’s up to them and the licencing commission,” MTN-Qhubeka team principal Doug Ryder told Cyclingnews.

 

In 2014, the UCI let Europcar join late and IAM were also a late addition to the 2015 top tier of cycling. There are currently only 17 teams in the top tier after Cannondale and Garmin merged last winter, and Ryder thinks the UCI would like to have 18 teams, meaning they could be offered a late slot.

 

They certainly aren’t unworthy of a spot at the top table, riding two Grand Tours and taking stage wins in both, as well as riding all five Monuments.

 

“We are the highest ranked Pro Continental team and we know that there is a massive interest for the UCI to fill that 18th spot in the WorldTour because that’s how they’ve made their business on trying to make that happen,” said Ryder.

 

“Of course it would mean some investment in our logistical side but we are prepared for that and to look at that. We’ve done a lot of that already this year, we have a double infrastructure. We aim to give our riders both our programmes the same experience and the same support.”

 

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