Skip to main content

Varnish lawyers accuse British Cycling of withholding information

Image 1 of 5

Jess Varnish is delighted with the team sprint victory

Jess Varnish is delighted with the team sprint victory
(Image credit: Gerry McManus)
Image 2 of 5

Great Britain's Jess Varnish gets ready for her ride in the the women's 500m time trial.

Great Britain's Jess Varnish gets ready for her ride in the the women's 500m time trial.
(Image credit: Gerry McManus)
Image 3 of 5

Jess Varnish (Great Britain)

Jess Varnish (Great Britain)
(Image credit: Daniel Simms)
Image 4 of 5

British Cycling’s Shane Sutton before the London Track Worlds

British Cycling’s Shane Sutton before the London Track Worlds
Image 5 of 5

Jess Varnish could only finish 6th in the women's 500m time trial

Jess Varnish could only finish 6th in the women's 500m time trial
(Image credit: Gerry McManus/www.splitsecondimages.co.uk)

Lawyers representing former Olympian Jess Varnish have accused British Cycling of withholding information related to her removal from the Olympic program ahead of the 2016 Rio Games and to the investigation into bullying and sexism complaints against former technical director Shane Sutton.

"We are reluctantly getting as little information as they feel legally obliged to give us, which we think is some way short of what we should get," Simon Fenton, an employment specialist at law firm Irwin Mitchell, was quoted by the Daily Mail. "So at the same time as they are promising to be more accountable and transparent, they are subjecting us to litigation by correspondence. They are saying to us, 'You can have the information, eventually, but you can't tell anybody about it'."

In December, Varnish's legal team requested from British Cycling all performance data, medical records and all emails and text messages sent by senior staff in the GB set-up about her, according to the Daily Mail. Varnish also requested findings of the investigation into her complaint against Sutton that was led by British Cycling director Alex Russell.

Attorneys fro Varnish claimed the report they received was heavily redacted and "rather thin," according to the Daily Mail report.

British Cycling maintains it has complied with the requests and further pointed out that out that Russell promised the people who cooperated with her investigation that their testimony would be confidential.