Riders Hold Key To Doping Reform Adoption

The founder of the Change Cycling Now group has remarked that the response from top riders to a radical proposal aimed at eliminating blood doping among the grand tour challengers should be known by the end of next month.

Jaimie Fuller who created the new lobby group behind the reform said he is optimistic that the proposal drafted by blood-doping expert Dr Michael Ashenden will be well received.

The blood-doping expert didn’t elaborate on the proposal details that was submitted to Gianni Bugno, the Italian president of the Association of Professional Cyclists, but said it would ”guarantee” that the winners of the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, and Vuelta a Espana were not able to undergo blood transfusions.

An Australian who also sat on the recent CCN conference in London, Ashenden, cited the requirement for the best grand tour riders of the world to evaluate the proposal first and then offer their feedback to himself, Bungo, and the Change Cycling Now group. Ashenden said the group requires assistance from the riders to put into place a system for next year that will ensure that the winner of a grand tour has not blood-doped. The doping expert further remarked that this short-term and intensive approach will restore public confidence in the race outcomes and the riders and the approach is for the riders, but it is very much by the riders.

Chief executive of compression garment firm SKINS that sponsors a number of cycling teams and other sports, Fuller, is suing the world governing body of cycling for damages to the reputation of his company from the Lance Armstrong doping scandal and cited the mismanagement of the UCI in the aftermath of the United States Anti-Doping Agency’s guilty verdict for the retired 41-year-old American rider Lance Armstrong, who has been stripped of all his seven Tour de France titles and banned for life for doping.

The UCI has dismissed the legitimacy of CNN but many in the cycling world are listening to the message of the newly formed group, especially in light of USADA and World Anti-Doping Agency concerns over an independent commission of inquiry into the handling of doping issues by the UCI.

Meanwhile, Fuller is confident that the Tour, Giro, and Vuelta organizers will support any proposal that enables them to put their hands on their hearts and say we have a clean winner. He added that it is awful to win and stand on the dais and knowing that everything whispering that he must have doped and went on to say that Bradley Wiggins as been copping this since he has won and this is inexcusable. Fuller also said Wiggins and Cadel Evans, who in 2011 became the first Australian to win the Tour and was seventh this year, should speak out more openly against doping. Public discussion over the doping issue must continue, especially should an official truth and reconciliation commission into it be held, said Fuller who also remarked that things can change quickly and for the better as it is about a change of mindset, not just about policing the problem.

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