Wah wah wah! Team RadioShack crying about Vuelta exclusion

Team RadioShack manager Johan Bruyneel has called for a shake-up in the running of professional cycling following his team’s exclusion from the Vuelta a España.

Bruyneel was angered that his team, co-owned by Lance Armstrong, did not receive one of the six wildcard places on offer from organisers Unipublic for the 22-team Spanish tour, despite moving up six places to eighth in the world rankings released on the same day as the list.

They also have the 11th- and 12th-ranked riders in the individual rankings: Janez Brajkovic, who rose 39 places from number 50 after winning the Criterium du Dauphiné Libéré on Sunday, and Christopher Horner, who won the Tour of the Basque Country. And Levi Leipheimer was victorious in the Tour of the Gila.

Bruyneel feels the time is now right for changes to the way the sport is run and that he is the man to take on the International Cycling Union (UCI).

"It is high time for professional cycling to become professional," he said. "The structure of our sport needs to change towards a model of other successful professional sports like soccer, tennis, formula one etc.

via Angry Team RadioShack demand cycling shake-up after Vuelta exclusion | Sport | guardian.co.uk.

Look Johan … Team Radio Shack has a ProTour license, which carries “the right and obligation to participate in all UCI ProTour events,” which includes all three Grand Tours.

Do you know what an obligation is? Let’s check the definition:

ob·li·ga·tion: A social, legal, or moral requirement, such as a duty, contract, or promise that compels one to follow or avoid a particular course of action.

See those words “duty, contract, or promise”? By accepting a ProTour license, Team Radio Shack agreed to fulfill the terms of that license, which is a contract.

Team Radio Shack snubbed the Giro d’Italia, foregoing their obligation, and thus breaking the contract … so the team shouldn’t whine about being snubbed in return by the organizers of the Vuelta a España.

It’s a two-way street, and once the contract is broken … it’s broken, and in this case, the team is the party that broke the contract, not the organizers of the Vuelta.

But of course, the egos behind Team Radio Shack feel the rules and contracts should only apply selectively, depending on whether or not it’s to the team’s benefit, but that’s not the case.

Either commit to racing all the ProTour events, or race none of them. Personally, I think it would serve the team right if the UCI revoked their ProTour license, and the Tour de France rescinded the team’s invite to the Tour de France as well.

But alas, I doubt that will happen.


  1. You don’t know what you are talking about. The grand tours are NO ProTour races…

    1. I stand corrected; Philippe is right, the Grand Tours are no longer part of the UCI ProTour.

      The fact remains that there is an expectation that the top teams will field squads at the Grand Tours, and by not racing the Giro d’Italia, Team Radio Shack is implying that one of the 3 biggest races in the World isn’t important enough for the team to make an appearance.

      By snubbing the organizers of the Giro, the team should not be surprised when the organizers of the Vuelta snub the team back.

      You get what you give, and whining doesn’t make the team look any better.

  2. Strange opinions you have Flahute. Zomegnan didn’t invite Radioshack because they wanted to field a very strong team for the Vuelta rather then the Giro. So according to you Radioshack should be punished by ASO for showing such loyalty to all their races?

    1. From http://www.velonation.com/News/ID/3537/Armstrong-and-Bruyneel-say-Radioshack-opted-not-to-ride-Giro-dItalia.aspx

      Lance Armstrong has rejected media reports that the Radioshack team was turned down for the 2010 Giro d’Italia, stating instead that the team itself decided not to take part.

      The seven-time Tour de France winner was speaking in advance of today’s announcement of the teams for this year’s race. Giro director Angelo Zomegnan has already said that RadioShack will not be one of those participating.

      “Interesting 2 read that @teamradioshack not selected 4 the Giro,” said Armstrong on Twitter. “Unrelated – guess they got our letter Jan 23 saying we wouldn’t be coming.”

      Zomegnan didn’t “invite” Radio Shack, because Radio Shack had previously informed them they weren’t planning to show up. Radio Shack snubbed the Giro, not the other way around. Other teams have just as many riders as Radio Shack, and yet are able to field teams at all three Grand Tours. Why can’t Radio Shack?

      Liquigas, Saxo Bank, BMC and HTC-Columbia were able to field teams at both the Giro and the Tour of California. BMC arguably sent a weaker team to the Giro than they did to California, and still were in contention for the overall at the Giro for almost the entire race … and they’re just a Pro Continental team, not even a Protour team. So why couldn’t Radio Shack field squads at both races?

      Apparently, because rules and conventions only apply when it’s to Radio Shack’s benefit.

      Again, as I said to Philippe, you get what you give, and whining about it doesn’t make the team look any better.

  3. Thank you for proving my point. Radioshack chose the Vuelta over the Giro. As to strength of team, none of the GT organisers seem able to accept that Radioshack should send a less than stellar team. They want it all. How can a rider do 3 GT’s in a year… unless his name is Sastre?

    So Radioshack gave to the Vuelta, and got shafted.

    On the other hand, if you are saying that you detest the Radioshack team and that you wish they ceased to exist and are delighted at their discomfiture, then that is your privilege; though I can’t imagine what harm the riders did to you to merit such scorn.

    1. I’ve hardly proved your point … every other ProTour team out there is managing to field a team at all three Grand Tours.

      Radio Shack has 26 riders; only 8 of those riders raced at the Tour of California. Are you telling me that the #8 team in the world is not capable of putting together a squad of capable riders to race the Giro? That there are no up and coming riders on the squad that could have put in a good showing, or that deserve to be given the chance by their team to race a Grand Tour?

      Why are all of the other ProTour teams capable of not only fielding squads at multiple races simultaneously, but of allowing different riders to rider different Grand Tours, but Radio Shack is not?

      Again, you get what you give. Radio Shack said “Fuck you” to the Giro, unlike all the other ProTour teams, and yet is whining because the Vuelta is saying “Fuck you right back.”

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