As the Spanish police investigation into doping in cycling has unfolded, the UCI has remained largely quiet. UCI President Pat McQuaid and ProTour manager Alain Rumpf broke their silence in Milan on the final day of the 2006 Giro d'Italia. Airing their concern over the events in Spain, two of cycling's head honchos were keen to inform the press of their hope to resolve the problems for the good of the sport. But both say they are officially still in the dark about what's happening and therefore unable to take action. Anthony Tan asks: If not now, when?
A few hours before the conclusion of the final stage of the Giro d'Italia, UCI president Pat McQuaid told the press that cycling's governing body lacks the necessary evidence to sanction any of the five people involved in the anti-doping investigation performed by the Unidad Centro Operativo in Madrid, codenamed 'Operacion Puerto'.
"I have to say for myself, as president of the UCI, the UCI board of management, and the UCI itself, I am saddened by the events coming out of Spain, and I'm also very angry about what we hear coming out of Spain," McQuaid said.
"At this point in time, although I have had contact with the Minister of Sport's office in Madrid, we don't know any more than what most of you already know. We only know the media reports; we have been told that information will be coming to us in the coming days and weeks, and we will be following up contact with the authorities in Spain for that information."
Stated McQuaid: "We have no definite information or proof of information that would enable us to make any particular decisions as of today."
Cyclingnews' recent coverage of 'Operación Puerto'
April 2, 2009 - Valverde indignant over possible suspension
April 1, 2009 - Valverde: Italy requests two-year suspension
March 13, 2009 - Le Monde newspaper hit with fine over Puerto allegations
March 2, 2009 - WADA president Fahey asks for Puerto evidence
February 24, 2009 - Spanish federation seeks access to Puerto blood bags
February 20, 2009 - CONI considers Valverde case while UCI awaits verdict
February 19, 2009 - Valverde under criminal investigation
February 11, 2009 - Valverde summonsed for Operación Puerto in Italy
February 8, 2009 - Eight charged in Operación Puerto