Two weeks before he faces a difficult election for a third term as UCI President, Pat McQuaid has made proposals to introduce new team structures to create what he describes as 'an environment that continues to be conducive to the cultural change within cycling."
Similar proposals have already been made and discussed by and with other stakeholders in the sport in recent months, following the UCI's stakeholder consultation, but any major changes to the structure of professional cycling expected to be introduced for the 2015 season.
McQuaid acknowledged that the UCI must also introduce a sustainable and long lasting economic model to assist teams in implementing the initiatives that he is proposing. As a result he backed ideas for 'a more equitable share of the revenue generated by race organisers" to help fund the changes.
“Today’s riders should never be faced with having to make the same choices as previous generations,” said McQuaid in a press release issued by his personal public relations company.
“Today’s teams and those of the future must be built upon a model where riders are placed at the centre of the organisation where their performance is monitored and underpinned through collaboration with a multi-disciplinary scientific team.”
Skills certification and revenue sharing
McQuaid proposed the introduction of a skills certification standard to ensure that those working within professional cycling as doctors, coaches and sports directors are suitably qualified and approved to do so. He called for new team structures to ensure that there is one doctor, one coach and one sports director, each with separate responsibilities, for every seven riders.
“This will enhance the level of monitoring care and support available to each rider, thereby helping riders to better manage their workload, race schedule and recovery,” said McQuaid.
“Individualised training and sustainable race load programmes up to a maximum of 80 days racing are also required. Teams must be capable of providing analytical, scientific and innovative training solutions for their riders that are based on performance monitoring, especially power metering."
McQuaid admitted that a different economic model should be introduced to fund the changes. He sided with the teams by suggesting that revenue generated by race organisers should be shared with the teams.
“This may well require the UCI to reduce the size of teams at UCI World Tour level and UCI Continental level by five or more riders respectively,” he said, without explaining how the race calendar would also be changed.