Team’s association ‘does not have confidence’ in UCI leadership
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Monday, March 5, 2012

Team’s association ‘does not have confidence’ in UCI leadership

by VeloNation Press at 6:55 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
AIGCP wants bigger say in decision making

UCICycling’s teams’ association the AIGCP has expressed its dissatisfaction with the way the sport is currently being run by the UCI, stating that it lacks confidence in the leadership of the organization.

Conveying its thoughts in a communication issued after its annual spring meeting last Friday in Paris, the statement appears to fault either the UCI president Pat McQuaid or the current management committee.

“While the AIGCP respects the hard work of the UCI and shares its ultimate goal of bettering the sport of professional cycling, at this moment it does not have confidence in its current leadership,” it stated.

However, while making it clear that it felt that things must change, the prospect of a so-called breakaway league doesn’t appear imminent. Rather than calling for an end to relations with the governing body, it wants to work with it to improve the situation.

“[The] AIGCP maintains that way forward for professional cycling is for the leadership of the UCI to be open to discussion on all topics and inclusive of the teams in all decision making,” it stated.

“The AIGCP teams will continue to defend their interest, the riders interest, and the interest of their sponsors, to help ensure stability and sustainability in the sport of professional cycling.”

Both the AIGCP and its president Jonathan Vaughters have long been saying that the teams need to receive greater financial return from the sport in order to make them less vulnerable to sponsorship issues.

That theme was echoed again today, as were others. “Professional teams, representing 2,000 employees and 321 million euros per year, are the biggest economical driving force in professional cycling and are currently under-represented in the decision-making process pertinent to the sport of professional cycling,” it said.

“The continued development of the sport of professional cycling will only take place if all stakeholders - including teams - have a fair and equal say in the decision-making process on items including (but not limited to) the continued discussion on effective two-way radio communication, the rules on equipment, participation in races, and sporting value evaluation. The AIGCP believes that all of these items need additional collaboration from the teams.”

The race radio situation was a major point of contention last season. The UCI reached a compromise agreement to delay the outright ban on the use of radios; in return, the teams agreed to compete in the Tour of Beijing. There had been suggestions that the race could be boycotted over the radio issue.

The UCI is currently assessing the race radio issue and, depending on the outcome, has said that it might yet push through a ban.

The AIGCP expressed reservations last year about a study set up by the UCI to evaluate the situation. Its president Jonathan Vaughters said that the study was not sufficiently neutral.


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