PARIS: The International Cycling Union (UCI) must quickly follow up on an Independent Commission report and implement a series of simple measures to eradicate doping, French League and World Tour team FDJ boss Marc Madiot said.
The 227-page report published on Monday shows that doping is less prevalent in cycling although it has not been eradicated, and recommends that the UCI works closely with governments to track down cheats.
Frenchman Madiot, a double Paris-Roubaix champion in his professional career as a rider and at the head of the FDJ team since its inception in 1997, believes three measures could quickly produce results in the fight against doping.
“(UCI president) Brian Cookson wanted his report, he’s got it. Now, action,” Madiot, who led France’s Thibaut Pinot to the Tour de France podium last year, told Reuters in a telephone interview.
“I’m not interested in the report, I’m interested in what is going to be done afterwards. I mean right now. In this report there are many things we already knew. The most important is what is going to be proposed and that is where I expect a lot from the UCI and Cookson.”
Among the CIRC recommendations was that the UCI should make more use of an article in its anti-doping regulations stating that in case of strong suspicion a rider can be tested outside the 6am-11pm window.
“I heard that. Why not?,” said Madiot.
“Simple things can be done: first off, a rider should not have access to his biological passport."
The biological passport, launched in 2008, is a record for riders, in which profiles of biological markers of doping and results of doping tests are collated over a period of time.
It helps the authorities detect abnormal values to a rider’s blood data.
“You should not give a rider his passport so he can’t be tempted to re-balance his blood data,” Madiot explained.
The CIRC report showed that riders would abuse corticoids by requesting – and easily getting Therapeutical Use Exemptions (TUE).
Corticoids are an anti-inflammatory drug that are allowed out of competition but forbidden during competitions unless a rider is granted a TUE.
“The corticoids? You just have to say ‘stop’, it costs nothing. If a rider is ill and needs corticoids, you just tell him to rest and get treated. You don’t race if you’re sick or injured,” said Madiot.
“End the use of corticoids, night-time testing, not giving a rider access to his passport. These are easy measures that cost nothing.
“You should also ban those doctors who have been involved in doping scandals and continue to work with teams, and force riders to race instead of disappearing from the team environment for three months,” he added.