• Mark Cavendish will be back at the Tour de France next year with Dimension Data, after the team's licence was confirmed by the UCI. (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Mark Cavendish's Dimension Data team will ride in the WorldTour for the 2016 season after their application for a WorldTour licence was approved by the UCI's Licence Commission.
Cycling Central

Cycling Central
27 Nov 2015 - 9:53 AM 

The team, formerly known as MTN-Qhubeka, rode its first Tour de France this year, and collected a stage win with British rider Stephen Cummings. But with the arrival of several new stars, and a more ambitious agenda for 2016, the team thought it was well time to move from the second tier of the sport, the ProConti ranks, to the WorldTour.

In accordance with UCI Regulations and following a full review of all criteria for attribution, Dimension Data met and exceeded all requirements and will join the WorldTour. Dimension was awarded a licence alongside Cannondale, Etixx-Quickstep, Katusha, Lampre-Merida, Lotto-Soudal and Team Tinkoff, who were all applying to renew their licences. 

“It’s an incredible feeling, we worked so hard over the last three years to build this team up from a team that didn’t exist to becoming the number one second division team in the world,” team principal Doug Ryder told Cyclingnews. “You never know until it’s really done, the UCI and the Licence Commission have their ways and means of what they need to do and focus on, to go through the right protocols.”

Although Dimension Data was expected to be granted wildcard places at many of the biggest races even without a licence, including the Tour de France, the award of a WorldTour will put any doubt to rest.

The full list of 18 WorldTour teams for the 2016 season is available here.