ProTour debate: Grand Tours back down...for now

The organisers of the three grand tours have acquiesced to honour the engagements with the 20...

The organisers of the three grand tours have acquiesced to honour the engagements with the 20 ProTour teams to their races this year, while at the same time stating that all of their issues with the UCI's controversial cycling reform have yet to be resolved. After meeting with UCI President Hein Verbruggen, the organisers of the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a España issued a communique on Wednesday stating, "Although we have reached an advanced stage about the rules for the 2005 season, the difference of opinion on the fundamental questions remains real and profound. Despite the situation, the commitments made by the organisers of the three grand tours last December 1 that guarantee the teams participation in their races, will be respected."

The organisers are still strongly against being required to hold a UCI licence to run their races, as they believe that they should own the rights for commercial exploitation. Also, the riders have not accepted the ProTour's Code of Ethics, which is another major bone of contention.

Cyclingnews' recent coverage of the ProTour-Grand Tours split

October 4, 2008 - New ASO chief to maintain values
September 26, 2008 - UCI declares peace, appoints new VP
August 30, 2008 - UCI re-signs five ProTour races
August 22, 2008 - ProTour: Bouncing back or lame duck?
August 19, 2008 - Stapleton analyses 'world calendar'
August 18, 2008 - Feedback on 'world calendar'
August 18, 2008 - UCI announces 'world calendar'

Cyclingnews' complete coverage of the ProTour-Grand Tours split

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