The professional riders’ association CPA has called for the establishment of an independent commission to carry out anti-doping controls in cycling and said that the UCI has lost credibility in the wake of the Lance Armstrong case.
CPA president Gianni Bugno told the association’s annual general meeting in Milan on Monday that he will seek a meeting with UCI president Pat McQuaid in order to discuss the matter. Bugno will request that at least one member of any such independent anti-doping commission is nominated by the CPA.
“The Armstrong affair is devastating not only because of the involvement of one of cycling’s biggest champions but also because of the loss of credibility and authority of the institutions who govern this sport,” he said in a statement from the CPA. “The riders cannot tolerate that there are doubts surrounding the correct application of sporting justice."
“It’s the duty of the heads of a sport to guarantee that the system is equal for all and the UCI, after the facts that have emerged from the Armstrong case, can no longer act as guarantor of the application of sporting justice.”
The CPA thus adds its voice to the teams’ association AIGCP, which already called for an independent anti-doping commission following its assembly in Paris in October. The UCI has also said it will create an independent commission to study issues and allegations contained in the USADA decision relating to the Armstrong affair.
The CPA has also requested greater regulation of teams operating at Continental level, noting that “this category can no longer be tolerated without contracts, salaries, insurance and controls that safeguard the health and lives of the riders.”
The current UCI points classification was also discussed at the CPA meeting, with the consensus being that a system that “rewards domestiques and not just champions” needs to be devised.
In recent seasons, an increasing number of riders have complained that they have been dropped by their teams due to a lack of UCI points, which form the essential part of squads’ applications for WorldTour status.