By Shane Stokes
The UCI will launch its latest weapon in the war against doping this Friday, two days before the start of Paris-Nice.
Entitled 100% Against Doping, the extensive programme will be unveiled at 5 pm at the Maison de l'Amérique Latine in Paris. Although little is known about what it will entail, UCI President Pat McQuaid previously described it as the most complete anti-doping plan in world sports. Unconfirmed rumours have suggested that blood volume testing and an examination for human growth hormone will be featured amongst its measures.
McQuaid confirmed recently that the cost of the programme would be spread between different bodies within the sport. "All of the stakeholders in the ProTour will be funding it;" he told Cyclingnews. "The teams, the riders, the organisers and the UCI. They will all be contributing.
"This is on top of the anti-doping measures already in place; this is purely a ProTour programme aimed at the teams and riders of the ProTour and those outside [Continental Professional teams] that who would possibly ride some ProTour events."
It is unknown whether Monday's meeting with the Grand Tour organisers has changed anything as regards the planned financing of the project. There, ASO, RCS Sport and Unipublic said they would co-operate with the UCI this season, but stopped short of saying that they were part of the ProTour.
A press release issued by the UCI on Tuesday said that many personalities from the cycling and sports world would be participating in the launch. It also stated that McQuaid will: "present his vision of the 2007 cycling season, following the meeting between the UCI, IPCT and the organisers of the Major Tours."