Independent anti-doping organisation Bike Pure today announced its relationship with Australian compression garment company SKINS in developing a certification program for companies who sponsor cycling.
The aim of the program is to allow companies and consumers to take a stand on the issue of doping in cycling, whereby consumers can choose to support organisations who stand behind efforts to eliminate drugs in the sport.
"One of the key drivers for cyclists or teams to be attracted to doping is the financial benefit that drug fuelled results may bring. Conversely, companies who tolerate or turn a blind eye to doping practises can receive a commercial benefit from the results," said Bike Pure Director, Andy Layhe.
"Bike Pure has created a certification program for companies to stand up and say that there is no tolerance for doping and no profit will be made from it.
Essentially the program shares similar traits to that of the 'Fair Trade' campaign, whereby those companies who utilise products made in accordance with Fair Trade agreement. Consumers can then choose products based on these principles.
Its launch comes after the 'New Pathways for Pro Cycling' conference this week that showcased the likes of Michael Ashenden and Floyd Landis speaking in Geelong, Australia, about the means with which the fight against doping can be fought.
"Bike Pure is pleased to announce that SKINS will become the first such company to become Bike Pure Certified. SKINS' values and intolerance of doping were paramount in Bike Pure's decision to adopt SKINS as the first Bike Pure Certified company," said Layhe.
"Just as cyclists and teams have responsibilities to play by the rules, so too do corporate sponsors. SKINS has a responsibility to promote integrity and honesty in all of our actions and relationships", said SKINS Sports Director of Cycling, Benjamin Fitzmaurice.
As part of the Bike Pure company certification program, SKINS will use the Bike Pure mark. Consumers can show their allegiance to the promotion of clean cycling by supporting companies who share Bike Pure's anti-doping message.
"SKINS sponsors over 150 athletes and teams around the world. We incorporate SKINS brand values and our manifesto into every agreement that we have with an athlete, team or association. This includes the fact that SKINS does not tolerate doping, or attempts to dope, in any sport," continued Fitzmaurice.
"It's vitally important to the clean cycling message that companies draw a clear line in the sand about what is expected of our cyclists and teams. SKINS message is that athletes should handle themselves with honesty and integrity at all times. Cyclists should play hard and fair - be determined and driven with the right spirit, the ‘true spirit of competition'."