Former Cycling Ireland vice president Moran hails decision to call EGM over McQuaid nomination
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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Former Cycling Ireland vice president Moran hails decision to call EGM over McQuaid nomination

by Shane Stokes at 2:17 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Cycling Ireland’s support for UCI president’s re-election set to be determined by its members

Anto MoranAnto Moran, who was the sole Cycling Ireland board member to vote no to a proposal to nominate Pat McQuaid for president at CI’s board meeting two weeks ago, has welcomed a decision Friday to call an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) over the matter.

CI issued a brief statement yesterday evening saying that at a board meeting it had ‘decided to convene an EGM to consider matters which have arisen following the decision taken at its Board meeting on April 12th, to nominate Mr Pat McQuaid to stand for the position of UCI President.’

The communication, which was signed by the CEO Geoff Liffey, added that details of the EGM would be circulated to all of the clubs early next week.

The development raises an uncertainty about whether or not McQuaid will retain the nomination for the UCI presidential election. If Cycling Ireland’s member clubs decide that he shouldn’t be backed, CI could then be forced to rescind that nomination.

McQuaid would then need to request the Swiss federation for its own backing; he is eligible to request that of the federation as he lives in Switzerland. He needs the support of one or other of the national federations if he is to run again as UCI president.

Moran had long expressed his doubts about whether CI should nominate McQuaid for a third term, believing that it was time for change.

He pointed out on Twitter on Thursday that CI may well have run into difficulties with the process of backing McQuaid, hinting at problems with the way its board meeting was run.

He then explained the issue to VeloNation, saying that the first meeting was chaired by a non-board member, contrary to Article 42 in Cycing Ireland’s Memorandum and Articles.

“At the meeting, it was mentioned about the memo and arts and that the directors should be up to speed on that. After the meeting I got a copy and went through it. I then noticed that there was a discrepancy at the original meeting,” Moran said.

“I was talking to some other guys and they were going the route of getting the clubs to call an EGM. I wrote to Cycling Ireland on Monday asking them to call an EGM on the basis that the original meeting was out of order.

“I was waiting and waiting and when I didn’t hear back from them I though they were going to pull a stunt. So I went public on that to bring it out in the open.”

Moran has been active in calling for a different president. No challengers to McQuaid have yet emerged, but he believes that it is important that they do. Yesterday’s board decision makes that more likely, as it will be perceived as a possible vulnerability on McQuaid’s part.

“It just goes back to USADA’s investigation,” said Moran, explaining his reasons for wanting a change. “That is the nub of everything for me. That is when my passion for cycling took a nosedive. I just believe that the UCI tried to take over that investigation, and that leaves me with too many questions.

“Do they really want to catch the big guys? Do they want to kick them out of the sport? I don’t think that they do.”

Moran’s concerns echo those of Cycling Ireland’s doctor Conor McGrane who, in a personal capacity, has been trying to push for an EGM in recent months. He too argues that change is needed, saying that the UCI has had too many issues in recent years and that a fresh start is required for the sport to move on.

“I strongly think we need a change at the top of the UCI. It is not a personal vendetta against Pat McQuaid, it is more a expression of dissatisfaction with the way the UCI has dealt with the whole doping issue over the past twenty years,” McGrane told VeloNation in the past.

He reiterated that position this week.

Clubs requesting input:


While Cycling Ireland was considering the point raised by Moran, others were pushing clubs to request an EGM. Under CI’s rules, if ten percent of the electorate request such a meeting it will then take place; by Moran’s estimation, this would be thirty to forty clubs, depending on their size.

Like Moran, Cillian Kelly of Irishpeloton.com is one of those who has been active in getting details out to clubs this week. He told VeloNation yesterday that thus far, a total of 31 clubs had expressed a desire to hold an EGM. As this was achieved over a short timeframe, it appears likely that the number would continue to grow as more clubs responded.

After CI’s board decision yesterday, club approaches to the federation will not now be needed for an EGM to take place. Moran greets the development. “I’m delighted, this was the position we wanted from the start,” he said. “When I was on the board I was hoping that the members would get to decide, and now it looks like it should happen.”

Asked if he thought there was a possibility that some of those on the board who backed McQuaid before may have had second thoughts, he said he hoped that this was the case. “One of the questions that was answered [by Pat McQuaid} at the meeting was contradicted the next day in an interview with Hein Verbruggen. I pointed that out to them that there was a bit of a discrepancy there, and said that they needed to look at this a bit more carefully.”

The other possibility is that the board knew it was inevitable that an EGM would take place. “With thirty clubs coming to us saying they were looking for an EGM, that was a tipping point for us,” said Moran. “Anything between thirty and forty clubs would be enough for us to force an EGM from the members. So realistically it was the right thing for Cycling Ireland to do.”

Although he resigned from the board after its original decision to back McQuaid, being disillusioned with the sport and with what he saw as a missed chance to effect necessary change, he is complementary now. “You have to admire them, to be quite honest,” he said, speaking of the board. “This is obviously a very difficult decision for Cycling Ireland, and you have to respect them as well.

“I think they did the right thing, hats off to the guys.”

Says work still to be done:

Cycling Ireland will next week begin nominating clubs. Moran said that a timeframe of at least 21 days will then pass before an EGM will be held; in that time, he states that he and others will continue to work.

“There are a group of us who have been working on this. We will pause for a little while to get our breath on this but we will reconvene on Monday and decide then on what way we will go.

“Obviously we have said ‘this is what we think this is the right thing do to,’ so it will be important that we actually now tell the members why we feel that this is the case. They will then decide what they want the board to do.”

Moran was a member of Cycling Ireland’s board for several years and said that his work with young riders in that capacity and as a coach made him question the environment of international racing. He said with questions still lingering from the past, that he didn’t have confidence in where those riders could be going.

“The first thing that crossed my mind when the USADA came out is that I am kind of particularly responsible for putting in the development system, and for bringing young riders through,” he explained.

“There are many good riders who have been through that development system over the past few years. But I was asking what we were putting them into? Where are we sending them?

“That is where I said ‘this is completely wrong’ and I supposed I got angry, to a certain extent. Now it is up to the grassroots to come out and say what they want to say. If they back McQuaid, so be it.”

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