French anti-doping agency will be allowed to carry out controls
The French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) has reached an agreement with the UCI to carry out additional testing at the Tour de France.
The agency has been at odds with the sport’s governing body in recent years, most recently over its obligations to provide medical supervision of controls at Paris-Nice. The AFLD refused to be involved with the UCI, citing the federation’s “serious mistakes” made in the past.
The organizers of the Tour de France, ASO, expressed a desire to have the AFLD perform controls at the Tour de France this year in order to have a “truly independent” anti-doping body involved.
The UCI has reached an agreement with the agency today, in which it will provide whereabouts information on riders and biological passport data so that the AFLD can perform random tests.
The independence of the UCI has been called into question repeatedly by the AFLD and ASO in the past. The ASO went so far as to hold its events outside the UCI's sanction in 2008, using the French agency to perform controls.
In 2009, the UCI was back in charge of controls for the Tour, but former president of AFLD, Pierre Bordry, accused the UCI of giving extra time for Lance Armstrong and his team to arrive for their doping controls.
The conflict led WADA to send independent observers to the 2010 edition, but it found no serious violations by the UCI. More recently, the dossier of evidence against Armstrong has again called into question the independence of the UCI.