On Friday the UCI announced that Mitsubishi - Jartazi is granted a wildcard status. But Friday night Mitsubishi - Jartazi announced that the team received the wildcard status under one condition: the
team is not allowed to let Frank Vandenbroucke start at Pro - Tour races.
The UCI demand is surprising as its unclear on which UCI rule the decision was based on. Team manager Patrick Stallaert
told HLN.TV on Saturday: "Its a hard decision and it took us by surprise. We will have a meeting with our sponsor to discuss
what we'll do now. There are several other riders who were banned in the past, but are allowed to start at Pro-Tour races.
The decision is based on nothing. There are no rules anymore and if we ask the UCI we don't get an answer."
Stallaert is upset by the UCI decision: "If they don't want to let him race then they shouldn't have granted him a
license. First they give him a license and then they say he is not allowed to race. Sorry, I don't understand. It was all
rather strange. At 4 pm (Friday, editor) we received information that the UCI wouldn't take a decision on that day. They informed
us that they have send a fax to the organisation of the Tour of Falnders that the 30 days rule [Teams with a wildcard status
have to apply for a wildcard 30 days in advance at the race organisation, editor] would not count for us as the UCI didn't
take a decision yet. And then we received a fax with this decision on 8.30 pm. Nobody understands."
Stallaert continued angrily saying that: "We talked with our sponsor [Mitsubishi, editor] and they paid the money for a
wildcard to the UCI. And then suddenly the UCI came with conditions. They should have told us about the conditions first.
Afterall they knew before that Vandenbroucke is part of our team. I have a problem with this. We did everything we could to
bring a new sponsor to cycling. Its a sponsor which believes in cycling. It isn't easy and it wasn't easy but now the body
which should govern cycling is destroying the sport."