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Lance Armstrong (Astana) getting his radio situated on the side of the road.
UCI cancels second experiment
The International Cycling Union (UCI) has cancelled the second of two planned radio ban days at this year's Tour de France.
On Thursday the UCI said that teams competing in the Tour de France will be allowed the use of team radio communications in Friday's stage 13 from Vittel to Colmar.
"To put an end to the controversy which is compromising the running of the Tour de France, the International Cycling Union (UCI) Management Committee has decided not to repeat the experiment of a stage without radio communication on Friday 17th July," the UCI's statement read.
The first stage of the experiment was carried out on stage ten to Issoudun, on Tuesday. The stage, eventually won by Mark Cavendish (Columbia-HTC), saw the peloton staging a relative 'go slow', the exact opposite of what proponents of the ban had been hoping for.
Speaking to Cyclingnews on Thursday afternoon Astana's press officer, Phillipe Maertens, said the team had not yet been informed by the UCI of the decision, but that he was pleased with the outcome.
"No, we have not heard anything. I knew that they would announce something today but this morning we hadn't heard anything yet," said Maertens. "Our team is not against the experiment, we were against the fact that it is being done at the Tour de France."
Astana's directeur sportif, Johan Bruyneel, had led calls to overturn the ban, which has been one of the hottest topics at this year's Tour de France. During the first week of the race, 14 teams signed a petition in an attempt to overturn the ban. Subsequent meetings between the teams objecting to the ban, on the Tour's first rest day in Limoges, failed to convince the UCI to reverse its decision.
The UCI said today that it would continue to "pursue the debate on the appropriateness of using radios during racing and will continue to consult all those involved in cycling as far as their use is concerned."