Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has confirmed that it is investigating the first case of ‘technological fraud’ following checks at the women’s U23 Cyclo-Cross World Championships, which took place over the weekend. ‘The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) confirms that pursuant to the UCI’s Regulations on technological fraud a bike has been detained for further investigation following checks at the Women’s Under 23 race of the 2016 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships’, read a UCI statement. ‘This does not concern any of the riders on the podium. Further details will be shared in due course.’
The Royal Belgian Cycling Federation (KBWB) told Belgian broadcaster Sporza that the cyclist involved is Femke Van den Driessche (pictured), a favourite who failed to finish, however she told media that there had been a mistake. “The bike wasn’t mine, I would never cheat”, she told Sporza. “The bike belongs to a friend of mine. He bought it from me after last season, and it is exactly the same bike that I would ride. The friend explored the trail with my brother and had the bike put on the truck. A mechanic must have thought it was my bike, cleaned it and taken it away.”
The UCI toughened its Regulations by adding a technological fraud section (highlighted in red) on 30 January last year, introducing Article 12.1.013bis, which mandates a maximum fine of CHF200,000 (€180,300) for an individual and CHF1 million (€901,500) for a team. ‘All teams must ensure that all their bicycles are in compliance with the provisions of article 1.3.010’, it reads. ‘Any presence of a bicycle that does not comply with the provisions of article 1.3.010, within or on the margins of a cycling competition, constitutes a technological fraud by the team and the rider. All riders must ensure that any bicycle that they use is in compliance with the provisions of article 1.3.010. Any use by a rider of a bicycle that does not comply with the provisions of article 1.3.010, within or on the margins of a cycling competition, constitutes a technological fraud by the team and the rider.’
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