The saga of delayed salary payments at RadioShack-Nissan has taken a new turn, as the team confirmed that the UCI's accounting firm came to team headquarters last week to examine the books. The squad's spokesman confirmed that some wages were delayed for “private” reasons, but both he and team manager Johan Bruyneel denied any serious problems.
The UCI confirmed last week that three riders from the Luxembourg-based team have officially notified them of failure of payments. Sporten.dk has now reported that Ernst & Young, the UCI's accounting firm, visited the team headquarters in Luxembourg last Thursday.
"It's true. They were there because some riders had complained that they were not getting their salaries on time, and it is the UCI's job to investigate. It was not Ernst & Young who had set it going, but the UCI,” team spokesman Philippe Maertens said.
"They were looking for the reason that wages were delayed, and they found it.” The reason for that is “private. Nobody is talking about salary.”
However, Maertens said, that did not mean there were problems with team salary payments. “Absolutely. No problems at all.”
Team manager Johan Bruyneel, who is following the Tour de France from his home in London, also denied any problems. “Everyone has been paid,” he said, according to Het Nieuwsblad. “That can be checked at the audit bureau. I will ask the UCI where that report comes from.”
UCI spokesman Enrico Carpani would not comment on the investigation. “I have not seen the result and we will not publish it when it comes,” he said.
Sporten.dk said that pay problems at the team started last year, with payments being delayed up to a week. “This year it has been more the rule than the exception that wages are paid late, and riders and staff have not been so informed,” the Danish website said.