Increased anti-doping tax for riders

The UCI's ProTour council (CUPT) has voted to increase the professional riders' contribution to the...

The UCI's ProTour council (CUPT) has voted to increase the professional riders' contribution to the fight against doping as of next year. Until now, two percent of the riders' prize moneys in ProTour races had to be paid to the UCI to add to the financing of anti-doping measures. As of 2009, this 'tax' will be raised to four percent.

The decision did not please the rider representatives within the ProTour council, Dario Cioni and Cédric Vasseur, who voted against it. The two representatives of the riders' association CPA insisted that "the largest majority of riders were opposed to a taking away of four percent, but that they accepted a participation of two percent."

But the CUPT being composed of 12 members (six representing the UCI, two representing the race organisers, two representing the teams and two representing the riders), the two pro riders were overruled.

For all the races which are not part of the ProTour calendar, the riders' financial participation to the fight against doping remains at two percent.

Further to this, Spanish cyclist Imanol Erviti (Caisse d'Epargne) recently deplored that the press did not publicise the riders' efforts against doping enough. "The measures against doping are not given the same media attention than the positive doping cases," he said at the 13th Days of Pro Cycling held in Cuenca, Spain, from November 20 to 22. "It is not being said, for example, that the riders pay a percentage of their prize money to the UCI for the controls."

The rider, who won a stage in the last Vuelta a España, denounced doping, saying that "every case that is announced does great damage, because in the end the whole peloton seems guilty." But he also insisted that "cyclists do things to combat doping that seem incredible in other sports, like permanently being located by the UCI or give DNA samples," according to Marca.

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