Deloitte review concludes there’s no conflict of interest between British Cycling and Team Sky
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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Deloitte review concludes there’s no conflict of interest between British Cycling and Team Sky

by VeloNation Press at 7:22 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Track, Olympics
 
Findings of year long review announced

Team SkyA long-awaited review conducted by Deloitte has concluded that there is no conflict of interest with regards to British Cycling’s partnership with the Sky Procycling pro team.

Concerns had been voiced due to the large amount of overlap between the two, with a national programme designed to get the best of Britain’s athletes sharing staff and facilities with the road team, which features international riders. Another concern was the dual role played by people such as Dave Brailsford, who had taken on the task of overseeing both the pro team and British Cycling’s track programme.

The review concluded on Wednesday and both the governing body and UK Sport have said that they are satisfied with the relationship.

“It would have been easy for us to rest on our laurels after the success we enjoyed in Beijing, but that's never been our style and the creation of Team Sky marked the start of an exciting new phase for British Cycling,” said BC chief executive Ian Drake.

“We were always confident that it would have a positive impact on our Olympic and Paralympic aspirations and indeed we are now really starting to see the benefits in terms of rider performance.

“That being said, we have learned a lot from the early days of Team Sky and are indeed continuing to learn as we look to constantly improve the way we operate. This review has been an important part of aiding that process and, whilst we're obviously pleased that no major risks have been highlighted, we are working alongside UK Sport to implement recommendations that will help maximise the benefit of the relationship with Team Sky to the World Class Performance Programme.”

Those recommendations include the recruitment of a finance director for British Cycling, plus the continuation of the close working relationship between BC and UK Sport so any risks or opportunities to the World Class Programme are identified early on. It has also been recommended that an operational document on the dual roles would be created and reviewed quarterly, to provide further ongoing monitoring of resources and finances.

Once concern was that there would be an adverse effect on Britain’s track cycling team in the run up to the London Olympics as a result of the energy and focus being put into Team Sky. The pro team had a tougher-than-expected debut last year and this coincided with a drop off in results for the track team, although British Cycling stressed that its track riders were deliberately building slowly towards London. It said there was no cause for concern. The upcoming world track championships will show how British riders compare to those on the world stage.

According to Liz Nicholl, Chief Executive of UK Sport, the Deloitte review has removed any doubts. “It has provided us with very good insight at a crucial time and helped to give us assurance about our investment,” she said. “British Cycling has long been one of the outstanding performers in British Olympic and Paralympic sport and it was very important that this review was conducted, in order that any potential risk to our significant investment in the sport was highlighted and managed appropriately.

"The fact that the review identified no major risks to the World Class Performance Programme is good news for everyone involved and indeed our aspirations generally as we look towards London 2012.

“Where there are actions to be taken, they are for the ongoing benefit of the programme and our investment and we will continue to monitor progress and work closely with British Cycling to implement the recommendations."

British riders took fourteen medals in the last Olympics, including eight golds. As a result UK Sport increased funding to £27m for London 2012, with it being keen that the cyclists would perform as well as possible on home soil.

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