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UCI President plans to grow both the men's and women's events
UCI President Pat McQuaid hailed the trade team time trials at this year's road world championships a success but said that more would be done in order to grow both the men's and women's events. The women's event was won by German outfit Specialized - Lululemon, with Omega Pharma Quick Step claiming the men's race.
"I was very pleased with today. I knew for some weeks or months that the teams were approaching this very seriously. There was wonderful participation from all the teams and when you see a close finish like that it's good for the race," he told Cyclingnews.
"It's an event that will grow in importance and strength in the coming years."
The UCI President said that the events were introduced in order to improve the depth of the world championships and give trade teams an opportunity to compete in a set of events that have previously been dominated by national teams. However McQuaid added that trade teams would never race in the road or individual time trials races.
"This was part of a whole project about changing the whole week of the world championships. Instead of having a worlds just over the final weekend we wanted to try and create a bigger event for the cycling family, for the whole week," he said.
"There has been comments made by some individuals that this would be the thin end of the wedge that and that in years to come the elite race would be for teams and not nations but that absolutely would never happen. This is an event for trade teams, the rest are for nations. There's too much history with the worlds cycling championships to start playing around with it."
Although both team time trials took place over different distances and with unequal prize money – the men's fund stretched to 100 000 CHF, while the women's sits at 30 000 CHF – McQuaid added that parity would be sought in the future.
"This was also a very good event and a very good promotion for women's cycling. That's something that will continue to grown. This event has the capacity to help grow cycling in the long term and we'll continue to work on that. I would like parity, and that's something we'll look to deal with in time."