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UCI President Pat McQuaid was on hand to see the riders off
Briton confirms allegations were heard by UCI Management Committee in June
UCI presidential candidate Brian Cookson has called for a swift investigation of the allegations of corruption made against current incumbent Pat McQuaid and his predecessor Hein Verbruggen in a document leaked to media on Monday.
The three-page document published by Velonews is a summary of a longer original report, understood to have been compiled at the request of Igor Makarov, head of the Russian Global Cycling Project that runs the Katusha team. The document accuses McQuaid and Verbruggen of corruption, attempting to conceal Alberto Contador’s positive test from the 2010 Tour de France and collusion with Lance Armstrong.
In a statement released on Tuesday, Brian Cookson confirmed that the allegations against McQuaid outlined in the leaked document are similar to those brought before the UCI Management Committee in June by United States representative Mike Plant.
“These allegations, which appear to be similar to those made to the UCI Management Committee in June, are clearly very serious,” Cookson said. “For the good of the UCI and cycling, they should be immediately and thoroughly investigated by the relevant authorities. I hope that this matter can be fully resolved before the UCI Congress on 27 September.”
Cookson did not specify what he meant by "relevant authorities" although the leaked document states that McQuaid did not follow up on his claim that he would bring the allegations before the UCI Ethics Commission for investigation. In a statement released on Monday evening, however, McQuaid said that Makarov and Plant had refused to forward a full version of the dossier to the UCI Ethics Commission.
Neither McQuaid nor Verbruggen could be reached for comment when contacted by Cyclingnews on Tuesday.
Both Cookson and McQuaid will appear before an Exceptional General Assembly of the European Cycling Union in Zurich on Sunday and present their respective programmes for the UCI presidency before the fourteen European voting delegates.
Prior to the presidential election in Florence, delegates at UCI Congress will also have to vote on an amendment to the UCI constitution that would allow McQuaid to run for re-election. Cycling Ireland and Swiss Cycling opted not to nominate McQuaid, but the Irishman is attempting to stand for election with support from the Moroccan and Thai federations.