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European Broadcasting Union says interest in cycling is growing

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The Amstel Gold Race is made up of 31 climbs

The Amstel Gold Race is made up of 31 climbs
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The view that greets the riders as they head to the start of the Tour of Flanders in Bruges

The view that greets the riders as they head to the start of the Tour of Flanders in Bruges
(Image credit: Richard Tyler)
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Stage 6 of the Dauphine to Morzine

Stage 6 of the Dauphine to Morzine
(Image credit: Sirotti)

The European Broadcasting Union appears undeterred by the recent doping revelations which have dominated cycling in 2012, announcing that it has extended its deal to provide coverage of the Amstel Gold Race until 2016, according to the Associated Press.

The move follows similar deals for the Tour of Flanders and the Critérium du Dauphiné in recent weeks.

The EBU is working with race organisers and broadcast networks to lobby the UCI to change the way the sport is presented. It comes at the same time that groups such as World Series Cycling suggest a more structured format to the racing season.

"We are pushing our partners in this direction," Stefan Kuerten, the EBU director of sports and business told the Associated Press. "No one is accepting smoke-screens and that [they] are doing it just for the camera for the next couple of weeks and months."

Kuerten explained that despite cycling's issues, there is still substantial interest and potential for growth.

"Most of us and others are believing that cycling is on the way ... to being a proper sport again without having any problems with doping."