Within three weeks the first classic Pro Tour Cycling event will take place; it is the Giro d’Italia which will open with a 28.5 kilometres stage in Palermo , Sicily followed by the Cefalu-Agrigento route of 207 kilometres.
It is no news to us the cycling world this high-demand sport has been severely hit by the constant doping cases involving the top cycling riders even Tour winners or team leaders. Therefore; in the French city of Paris many prominent cycling authorities have met to pursue a reform to the sport in order to set a new beginning and grow stronger in credibility.
Among the participants were: Victor Cordero, head of the International Association of Cycling Race Organisers (AIOCC), Eric Boyer from the International Association of Professional Cycling teams (AIGCP), French Cycling Federation (FFC) President Jean Pitallier and other representatives of Tour de France organiser Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO). The only missing part was that of the (UIC) International Cycling Union who unfortunately rejected the invitation.
These representatives met at the French Olympic Committee and agreed to sign a new declaration to restructure the sport regulation and doping wise as well as to create a more exclusive 2009 cycling calendar for the future.
We agree on what we want,” said teams representative Boyer about the different roles of race organisers, teams and riders. “Now, we have two choices: Either we tell the UCI that it has its place within the framework we conceived or we acknowledge the fact that it did not reply to our extended hand. I prefer the first option.”
Another body which does play a main role in the fight for a new start off in cycling is the International Cycling Union which manages the three jewels of cycling; Il Giro, Tour de France and La Vuelta. Despite their agreement to establish an anti-doping plan and the mandatory blood passports cyclists need to carry with them at all times; it is required for the group to openly join forces with the other cycling bodies to be successful; for example the World Anti-Doping Agency
“WADA agreed to pilot its athlete’s passport project with the UCI, rather than any other sport, in an attempt to help restore cycling to a cleaner and more credible state,” said John Fahey, who replaced Pound as WADA president in January. “This came following a cycling season and Tour de France in 2007 in which cycling was yet again wracked with doping scandals.”
Nevertheless, their presence at the Paris meeting left an empty seat which we hope does not remain that way and we could soon see all the correspondent authorities working together for one single purpose – the reestablishment of one of the most-beloved sports in history.