Tygart Warns Cycling Running Out Of Time To Change Things

Travis Tygart, chief of the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) who exposed Lance Armstrong, has urged the world governing body of cycling to correct things at the earliest. Tygart remarked that cycling is running out of time for overhauling the sport and restoring the trust of fans in the wake of successive doping incidents.

Tygart remarked the UCI should accelerate its Cycling Independent Reform Commission if faith of everyone in the sport was to be restored. He remarked time is of the essence and we have been pounding this issue in the press, in front of the European Union, in front of the French senate, the German parliament, and that now is the time to take and fulfill the promise that the UCI leadership made to take decisive and transparent action. He also said another day can’t go by in his opinion until it is put in place in proper fashion and this process starts. Tygart, speaking at the Tackling Doping in Sport conference, said we’ve had communication with the CIRC that we are going to present this all to them because there is a whole lot of information out there that would be helpful in cleaning out the system that is there. He also remarked just because you change the top, the dirty system doesn’t necessarily change.

The USADA chief added the “honeymoon period” brought about by the election of Brian Cookson is at an end and believes that he is thinking of providing an unredacted version of the “reasoned decision” that brought down Lance Armstrong to the UCI to help the CIRC to “clean out the system”.  Tygart remarked he feels that it was not imperative that the CIRC heard from Armstrong as there’s plenty of information outside of them showing up to testify that can be useful for putting a stake in the ground and moving forward.

Tygart added everyone, including Lance Armstrong, deserves a second chance to cooperate and added he hopes Armstrong from a reputational and a rehabilitation standpoint comes in and helps clean up to the extent that his information is still valuable for that as it would absolutely be the best thing for him from a reputational stand point. Tygart added he doesn’t think it was just limited to an Armstrong story and he believes American enterprise decided to come over and capitalize financially in the United States on the Tour de France.

Brian Cookson took over UCI after replacing Pat McQuaid as president of the UCI and established the Cycling Independent Reform Commission to examine the role of the governing body in fostering a culture of doping. The three-person panel of CIRC has promised to report by the end of January next year and has promised reduced sanctions to riders and others involved in the sport, including coaches and team directors if they agree to cooperate.

Martin Gibbs, the UCI director general, said we must not pretend it’s already fixed and added that we are acutely aware we have to make a difference now in key areas with the independent commission. He also remarked we are a sport that has had an omerta about doping.

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