CAS rule in favour of Katusha

The Court of Arbitration for Sport has ruled in favour of Katusha in awarding a WorldTour licence to the Russian team.

Katusha was denied a WorldTour licence in December on "ethical grounds" and the International Cycling Union in January handed the team a lower-level Professional Continental licence to allow it to race.

A CAS statement read: "A CAS hearing was held on February 8, 2013, during which the parties and their representatives were heard by the CAS Panel in charge of this matter.

"In its deliberations following the hearing, the CAS Panel did not reach the same conclusions as the UCI Licensing Commission and decided to uphold the appeal."

The UCI must now decide whether they can approve a 19th WorldTour team or remove one of the licences already awarded.

The licence ensures entry to the top events on cycling's calendar.

The UCI responded in a statement, which read: "The UCI acknowledges the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) decision to uphold the application of Katusha Management SA to be registered as a UCI ProTeam for the season 2013.

"The appeal to CAS followed the decision of the licence commission on December 7, 2012 denying the registration on the basis of the ethical criterion applicable to such registration.

"The UCI will now evaluate the consequences of this ruling and will communicate further in coming days, as soon as such evaluation has taken place."