Greg LeMond calls for reduced UCI powers and independent anti-doping
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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Greg LeMond calls for reduced UCI powers and independent anti-doping

by Ben Atkins at 11:36 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
American Tour winner speaks on the first day of Change Cycling Now’s London conference

greg lemondSpeaking on the opening day of the inaugural meeting of the Change Cycling Now (CCN) pressure group, in London, England, Greg LeMond has called for a reduction in powers for the International Cycling Union (UCI). The 51-year-old who, since the disqualification and disgrace of Lance Armstrong, has once again become the only American to have won the Tour de France opined that the task of anti-doping should be out-sourced to an entirely independent organisation.

“Myself and [former teammate and ex-Cofidis team manager] Eric Boyer called for independent doping back in 2008,” LeMond explained. “The Amaury Sports Organisation [ASO, the organiser of the Tour de France - ed] were all for it, but unfortunately, the UCI was not.

“There has to be transparency provided by a third party, no question,” LeMond continued. “The UCI should be focused on promoting the sport, not unilaterally policing it. Doping, its operation and its sanctions should be the responsibility of a body that is clearly outside of UCI jurisdiction and there has to be a system that looks much more closely at the source of doping and supply rather than just on those who dope.

“At the moment, there is no incentive for riders to confess and reveal what's going on because it’s only them who're being punished,” he added.

LeMond expressed his views at the CCN meeting, which was also attended by journalists Paul Kimmage and David Walsh, Garmin-Sharp manager Jonathan Vaughters, anti-doping campaigners Scott O’Raw and Bike Pure’s Andy Lahye, and blood-doping expert Dr Michael Ashenden.

The first address to the group was given by Dr Ashenden, who outlined the major issues facing the sport in the wake of the Armstrong case.

“This is not just about Lance Armstrong,” said Ashenden. “This is about the whole issue of doping within cycling and the negative impact the UCI's approach has had on its credibility.”

The meeting also received information provided by David Howman, the general director of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), who confirmed WADA’s current approach to anti-doping procedures and practices.

The group’s discussions - and their outcomes - will be outlined at a press conference in London tomorrow.


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