UCI 2008 Anti-doping Programme

The anti-doping programme of the UCI is recognised as one of the most comprehensive and effective in the world. It covers all the cycling disciplines and is continually being improved.

The programme has two objectives:

– To detect doping,

– To deter riders from resorting to doping.

An effective anti-doping programme should act as a deterrent and should also expose cheats. As our programme becomes increasingly effective, it is possible that the number of anti-doping rule violations and thus the visibility of doping within the sport may increase. We accept this consequence. Removing the cheats from the sport is essential to deter others and we are determined to take the tough measures necessary.

“100% Against Doping” is the UCI programme developed specifically for our professional road sector. The strength of “100% Against Doping “ lies in the fact that it combines several different elements: urine and blood anti-doping controls, blood screens (which enable the rider’s haematological parameters to be analysed), strong and consistent sanctions, education, communication and collaboration with stakeholders.

For 2008, as an important new element to “100% Against Doping”, we have introduced the biological passport for riders in UCI ProTeams and UCI Professional Continental teams who are successful in gaining a Wild Card Label. The passport is an individual electronic record for each rider which includes their haematological and steroid profiles. From these profiles individual limits will be set for each person, thereby enabling much greater accuracy in detecting manipulation compared with a system which relies on population based limits.

In 2008 each rider in the Passport Program will have:

•     12 blood tests, at least 10 of which will be out-of-competition,
•     4 urine tests, at least 3 of which will be out-of-competition,
•     in-competition blood and urine tests pursuant to our Anti Doping Rules,

•     additional out-of-competition tests as required for follow-up or targeted testing.

The professional road riders who are on the Passport Programme are part of the UCI Registered Testing Pool (RTP) which consists of the top ranked riders from all cycling disciplines as well as riders about whom we have particular concerns. Over 800 riders are included in the RTP which is updated throughout the year. These riders have to comply with a strict programme of providing us whereabouts information so that we can perform out-of-competition tests at any time during the year.

Riders outside the RTP are also tested in accordance with our rules. This includes in-competition testing and intelligence based targeted testing of certain riders.

In terms of sanctions, the UCI applies the rules stipulated by the World Anti-Doping Code: a rider that cheats is liable to a 2-year suspension for his or her first anti-doping rule violation. A second serious anti-doping rule violation will normally result in a life suspension.

As well as testing and profiling we strongly believe that rider education plays a key part in its anti-doping programme. For example we have recently worked closely with the riders in the Passport Program to assist them in managing the greatly increased level of whereabouts information for the 2008 season. During 2008 an interactive DVD, on-line learning experience will be developed to assist riders understand the rules, ethical dilemmas and health issues associated with doping.

We also believe that positive engagement from the riders and teams is essential. This is why in 2007 we worked with them when we launched the initiative “Commitment to a New Cycling” which we continue to support for the 2008 season. We also work closely with the team representatives, the AIGCP, who have developed the ProTeam Code of Conduct which addresses doping as a key issue for the integrity of professional cycling.

The UCI anti-doping service, managed by Anne Gripper has nine full-time members of staff, including well-known medical and scientific adviser, Dr Mario Zorzoli. The service collaborates closely with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and national bodies in the delivery of our programme. In particular WADA and the French Ministry of Sport are partners with the UCI on the implementation of haematological profiles which form part of the biological passport.

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