Tag Archives: mcquaid

Lance Armstrong doping scandal: UCI complicit, claims sponsor

Sponsor claims that UCI were complicit with Armstrong in covering up doping

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UPDATED:

23:13 GMT, 5 November 2012

Disgraced: Armstrong

Disgraced: Armstrong

Pressure continued to mount on the International Cycling Union (UCI) on Monday with one sponsor claiming the organisation was 'complicit' in sweeping the Lance Armstrong doping scandal under the carpet.

Jaimie Fuller, chairman of the Australian sportswear firm Skins that has ploughed around 10million US dollars into the UCI over the last five years, says the scandal has caused reputational damage to the sponsors.

The firm has served a legal notice on the UCI claiming 2million dollars (1.25m) in compensation.

Fuller said: 'This is a ground-breaking move and it's one of those situations that could become case law for the future.

'When a sport is in trouble you look to
the international federation to help it through. It's a pretty rare
situation where the international federation is actually complicit in
what was going on.'

Fuller also claimed that UCI president
Pat McQuaid and his predecessor and honorary president Hein Verbruggen
needed to accept responsibility for the failure to deal with Armstrong,
who was last month stripped of his seven Tour de France titles.

'These two gentleman have sat at the top of world cycling for 22 years and they need to be accountable for what they did and did not do,' said Fuller.

Meanwhile, British cyclist David Millar says the UCI need to make a full apology.

Millar told the Guardian:
'The UCI need to be very careful, because the momentum is rolling too
fast for them to control it. Just as with Lance Armstrong, we'll reach
another tipping point soon. I sense the same looming crash with the UCI –
unless they act decisively.

'I
don't think they realise what everyone needs is immediate action.
They're trying to go through the usual sports politics way of trying to
ride this out until people forget about it. These are career sports
politicians. But they cannot evade this any longer. They have to act
quickly or they're going to face a total revolt and they'll be out
anyway.

Under pressure: Millar demanded a full apology

Under pressure: Millar demanded a full apology

'Now there is a
public awakening and the UCI will be in real trouble unless they make a
full apology. There seems to be some unbreakable alliance between
McQuaid and Verbruggen. Pat needs to cut that cord and move forward. He
needs to wake up to the fact that some revolutions become unstoppable.'

McQuaid and Verbruggen did not respond to requests to comment on Fuller's claims when contacted.

The UCI later released a statement in which it stated steps it has taken since the Armstrong affair became public, including setting up an independent commission to examine the issues raised.

The statement read: 'The UCI can confirm that it has received a letter from the chairman of Skins International Trading AG.

'In the years that Skins have been a sponsor, since 2008, cycling has been a completely different sport from what it was during the period 1998-2005, when tests for EPO did not exist.

'Since the dark period of Lance Armstrong, cycling has been a pioneer in the fight against doping in sport under the leadership of the UCI and this role has been recognised by WADA. For example, it was the UCI that first introduced the urinary EPO test, the homologous blood transfusion test and the Athlete Biological Passport programme.

Fallout: Armstrong has been stripped of all seven of his Tour de France

Fallout: Armstrong has been stripped of all seven of his Tour de France

'As a result, today's riders are subject to the most innovative and effective anti-doping procedures and regulations in sport.

'Today, cycling has enjoyed a huge boost in visibility and popularity, as was apparent at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

'The UCI is determined to turn around this painful episode in the history of our sport. We will take whatever actions are deemed necessary by the independent commission and we will put cycling back on track.

'While we understand the concerns expressed by Skins, the UCI is determined to work hand in hand with all cycling's stakeholders towards the same goal, which is to safeguard the integrity and future wellbeing of the sport.

'The UCI has listened to the world's reaction to the Lance Armstrong affair and the USADA report and has taken decisive steps in response to the grave concerns raised, including setting up a fully independent commission.

'The UCI is determined that this independent commission will just be the start of the process and nothing will be off the agenda.'

Paul Kimmage takes legal action against UCI leaders over whistle blowers

Former cyclist Kimmage takes legal action against UCI leaders over whistle blowers

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UPDATED:

23:52 GMT, 1 November 2012

Irish journalist Paul Kimmage has
lodged a criminal complaint against International Cycling Union
president Pat McQuaid and honorary president Hein Verbruggen in a move
which will subject the leadership of the world governing body to further
scrutiny.

The UCI, McQuaid and Verbruggen last
week announced they were suspending defamation proceedings against
former Sunday Times journalist Kimmage pending the results of an
independent report.

Claims: Reporter Paul Kimmage (centre)

Claims: Reporter Paul Kimmage (centre)

Now former rider Kimmage, who has been hugely critical of the UCI leadership's response to doping in cycling, has launched proceedings of his own as the impact of the Lance Armstrong affair shows no sign of abating.

Kimmage wrote on Twitter: 'I have lodged a criminal complaint against Hein Verbruggen and Pat McQuaid.

'I have initiated these proceedings not for myself – this is not about Paul Kimmage, but on behalf of the whistle blowers – Stephen Swart, Frankie Andreu, Floyd Landis, Christophe Bassons, Nicolas Aubier, Gilles Delion, Graeme Obree and every other cyclist who stood up for truth and the sport they loved and were dismissed as “cowards” and “scumbags” by Verbruggen and McQuaid.'

Pat McQuaid must resign, says Greg LeMond after Lance Armstrong scandal

Three-time Tour winner LeMond urges McQuaid to resign after Armstrong scandal

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UPDATED:

14:42 GMT, 25 October 2012

Three-time Tour de France winner Greg LeMond has called for the resignation of Pat McQuaid, the president of cycling's world governing body the UCI.

In an open letter published on Facebook, LeMond, winner of the 1986, 1989 and 1990 Tours and now the only American winner of the Tour after Lance Armstrong was stripped of his seven titles, was critical of Irishman McQuaid and his predecessor Hein Verbruggen, who remains honorary president of the organisation.

'I want to tell the world of cycling to please join me in telling Pat McQuaid to resign,' LeMond wrote.

Making his point: LeMond has called for the resignation of McQuaid

Making his point: LeMond has called for the resignation of McQuaid

'I have never seen such an abuse of power in cycling's history – resign Pat if you love cycling. Resign even if you hate the sport.'

LeMond added his weight to the campaign to support former Sunday Times journalist Paul Kimmage, who is the subject of a defamation suit brought by McQuaid and Verbruggen in Switzerland.

The American has made a donation to the fund to support Kimmage's legal fight, but would prefer money is used to 'lobby for real change'.

Under fire: McQuaid's judgement has come into question

Under fire: McQuaid's judgement has come into question

'I would like to use it to lobby for dramatic change in cycling,' LeMond added.

'The sport does not need Pat McQuaid or Hein Verbruggen – if this sport is going to change it is now. Not next year, not down the road, now! Now or never!

'People that really care about cycling have the power to change cycling.'

LeMond had long been critical of Armstrong before the Texan was stripped of his seven Tour titles by the UCI on Monday, when McQuaid insisted cycling had a future and stressed his determination to be part of it.

Shamed: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles

Shamed: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles

Armstrong and his United States Postal Service team ran 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen,' a 1,000-page United States Anti-Doping Agency report concluded.

A special meeting of the UCI's management committee will take place tomorrow to discuss the 'exact sporting consequences' of the decision, including whether the 1999 to 2005 Tour titles and prize money will be redistributed.

Lance Armstrong stripped of Tour de France titles by UCI at last

Saddled with shame: Cycling's snivelling chief still in denial over culture of cheating that has infested his sport

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UPDATED:

22:37 GMT, 22 October 2012

Cycling's world governing body are willing to accept that Lance Armstrong is a doping cheat. Hallelujah.

The UCI made it sound as radical a discovery as finding human life on Pluto rather than a belated admission from an organisation who — and we are being generous here — were complacent as the greatest fraud in sporting history unfolded before them.

Pat McQuaid, the snivelling, self-preserving president, said: ‘The UCI will ban Lance Armstrong from cycling and the UCI will strip him of his seven Tours de France titles. Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling. He deserves to be forgotten.’

Shamed: Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his titles after the UCI endorsed the USADA sanctions

Shamed: Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his titles after the UCI endorsed the USADA sanctions

In fact, he was stripped of those
titles, ranging from 1999 to 2005, by the US Anti-Doping Agency in
August. The UCI were merely ratifying USADA’s legitimate act.

McQuaid spoke in Geneva as though he
was shocked by USADA’s findings. Shocked He could only be shocked if he
was blind, wilfully perhaps, to accusations that have been prevalent
for a decade. During McQuaid’s seven-year presidency, former US Postal
rider Frankie Andreu told the New York Times that doping was taking
place during Armstrong’s first Tour de France victory in 1999.

Self-preserving: President Pat McQuaid spoke as if he was shocked

Self-preserving: President Pat McQuaid spoke as if he was shocked

Then Armstrong’s former team-mate
Floyd Landis sent McQuaid, among others, emails detailing the drug
culture two years ago. But 63-year-old Irishman McQuaid tore into the
whistle-blowers and brushed their accusations under the Axminster.

Even as late as last month, McQuaid’s
fire was turned on USADA for their handling of the investigation into
Armstrong. The UCI barely twitched an eyebrow at the accusations.

‘We thought USADA were better
prepared,’ sniffed McQuaid, chiding them for taking so long to compile
their dossier. In the end the report amounted to 200 pages with 800
pages of appendices. It was a thorough job that soon made McQuaid look
ridiculous.

Banned: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour titles by the USADA, but claims he was the victim of a 'witch hunt'

Banned: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour titles by the USADA, but claims he was the victim of a 'witch hunt'

It also left him with no choice other than to display faux outrage on Monday.

He talked of the UCI ‘always having a
commitment to fight doping’, adding with a flourish: ‘If I have to
apologise now on behalf of the UCI what I will say is that I am sorry we
couldn’t catch every damn one of them red-handed and throw them out of
the sport.’

If he really possessed principle, he
would have resigned for having cried calumny against the accusers when
he should have launched an investigation.

Britain’s David Millar, a
self-confessed doper turned World Anti-Doping Agency activist, said:
‘The UCI always denied there was a problem and even now they are denying
they had knowledge of it, and that’s the next big step.’

McQuaid, a former teacher and road
cyclist, is the first paid UCI president. He took the job in 2005 at the
behest of Hein Verbruggen, his predecessor who is now honorary
president. The two men are said to be joined at the hip.

It is notable that the last
undoubtedly clean Tour victory until recent years, that of Greg LeMond
in 1990, came one year before Verbruggen took charge of the UCI. All
Armstrong’s wins came under his stewardship.

Not so magnificent seven: Armstrong's wins have been erased from the Tour de France record books

Not so magnificent seven: Armstrong's wins have been erased from the Tour de France record books

Support: Cyclists gathered to listen to Armstrong's address at the start of the annual Team Livestrong Challenge in Austin on Sunday

Support: Cyclists gathered to listen to Armstrong's address at the start of the annual Team Livestrong Challenge in Austin on Sunday

Oakley cut ties with Armstrong

Lance Armstrong has lost the support of another major sponsor after Oakley severed their ties with the disgraced cyclist.

The brand confirmed in a statement they were ending their relationship with the Texan in the wake of the announcement in Geneva.

Oakley have followed in the footsteps of Nike, Trek and Anheuser-Busch, brewers of Budweiser, who have all withdrawn their support for Armstrong.

An Oakley statement read: 'Based on UCI's decision today and the overwhelming evidence that USADA presented, Oakley has severed its long-standing relationship with Lance Armstrong, effective immediately.

'When Lance joined our family many years ago, he was a symbol of possibility. We are deeply saddened by the outcome, but look forward with hope to athletes and teams of the future who will rekindle that inspiration by racing clean, fair and honest.

'We believe the LIVESTRONG Foundation has been a positive force in the lives of many affected by cancer and, at this time, Oakley will continue to support its noble goals.'

Armstrong has stepped down from his position as chairman of his cancer charity.

But McQuaid blithely insisted the UCI
had no case to answer over alleged payments made to them by Armstrong
and associated companies, adding that a defamation action against
journalist Paul Kimmage, who made claims of hush-money changing hands,
would go ahead as planned.

Verbruggen is an honorary member of
the IOC, McQuaid is on the IOC’s evaluation committee for the 2020 Games
and cycling is an important Olympic sport. Yet the IOC have yet to
comment meaningfully on the Armstrong affair.

They say they will await the UCI’s
management committee meeting on Friday, when the issue of whether to
redistribute the Tour titles and the prize money will be resolved. Fine,
but the IOC should then act decisively.

Jacques Rogge, the IOC president, is a
man of integrity. But he is also a friend of Verbruggen, a personal
association that should not be allowed to interfere with what is right.

They would do well to heed the words
of the one hero of this tawdry episode, USADA chief executive Travis
Tygart, who said: ‘For cycling to move forward and for the world to
know what went on in cycling, it is essential that an independent and
meaningful Truth and Reconciliation Commission be established.

‘There are many more details of doping
that are hidden, many more doping doctors, and corrupt team directors
and the ‘omerta’ (within the peloton) has not yet been fully broken.
Sanctioning Lance Armstrong and the riders who came forward truthfully
should not be seen as penance for an era of pervasive doping. There must
be more action to combat the system that took over the sport.’

Away from Geneva, Armstrong lost
another sponsor, Oakley, who followed the lead set by Nike, Trek and
Budweiser brewers, Anheuser-Busch. In Armstrong’s home state of Texas,
insurance company SCA Promotions have demanded the return of a bonus
worth up to 5million paid after he won his sixth Tour in 2004.

And yet on his Twitter account, how was Armstrong styling himself on Monday night As the seven-time Tour winner, of course.

Ex-doper: David Millar (right) says there needs to be change

Ex-doper: David Millar (right) says there needs to be change

Lance Armstrong stripped of Tour de France titles

Armstrong stripped of Tour de France titles and banned for life as UCI ratify sanctions against disgraced rider

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UPDATED:

13:01 GMT, 22 October 2012

Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles after
the sport's world governing body, the UCI, accepted the findings of the
United States Anti-Doping Agency's investigation.

Armstrong refused to co-operate with USADA, who earlier this month published
a 1,000-page report which concluded the Texan and his United States Postal
Service team ran 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping
programme that sport has ever seen'.

Shamed: Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his titles after the UCI endorsed the USADA sanctions

Shamed: Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his titles after the UCI endorsed the USADA sanctions

In accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code, the UCI had 21 days to
respond, until October 31, and president Pat McQuaid today announced the world
governing body would accept USADA's findings and ratified the sanctions imposed
on Armstrong.

It means the Texan has been stripped of all results since August 1, 1998 and
banned for life.

At a media conference in Geneva, McQuaid said: '(The UCI) will not appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport and it will recognise the sanctions that USADA has imposed.

'The UCI will ban Lance Armstrong from cycling and the UCI will strip him of his seven Tour de France titles. Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling.'

Endorsement: UCI chief Pat McQuaid confirmed the governing body accepted the Lance Armstrong sanctions

Endorsement: UCI chief Pat McQuaid confirmed the governing body accepted the Lance Armstrong sanctions

Eleven former team-mates of Armstrong testified against him to USADA, receiving six-month bans.

These suspensions were also ratified by the UCI, which thanked the riders for giving evidence against Armstrong.

McQuaid added: 'The UCI will also recognise the sanctions imposed on the riders who testified against Lance Armstrong; UCI indeed thanks them for telling their stories.'

Banned: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour titles by the USADA, but claims he was the victim of a 'witch hunt'

Banned: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour titles by the USADA, but claims he was the victim of a 'witch hunt'

The UCI, particularly the leadership of McQuaid and honorary president Hein Verbruggen, who was president at the time of Armstrong's record run of Tour success, have met criticism over the USADA investigation.

Allegations have been made against the UCI, which McQuaid dismissed.

'UCI has nothing to hide in responding to the USADA report,' he said. 'The UCI has called a special meeting of the UCI management committee next Friday to discuss this report and the measures which the UCI wishes to put in place in order that we are never faced with such a situation in the future.'

Not so magnificent seven: Armstrong's wins have been erased from the Tour de France record books

Not so magnificent seven: Armstrong's wins have been erased from the Tour de France record books

While addressing the past, McQuaid was steadfast in his belief that cycling has a positive future.

He added: 'This is a landmark day for cycling. Cycling has endured a lot of pain as it has absorbed the impact of the USADA report.

'UCI promised to prioritise our analysis of the report and to provide an early response and we've done that.

'My message to cycling, to our riders, to our sponsors and to our fans today is: cycling has a future.

Support: Cyclists gathered to listen to Armstrong's address at the start of the annual Team Livestrong Challenge in Austin on Sunday

Support: Cyclists gathered to listen to Armstrong's address at the start of the annual Team Livestrong Challenge in Austin on Sunday

'This is not the first time that cycling has reached a crossroads or that it has had to begin anew and to engage in the painful process of confronting its past.

'It will do so again with renewed vigour and purpose and its stakeholders and fans can be assured that it will find a new path forward.

'We're here to answer your questions and to say to the cycling community: UCI is listening and is on your side.

'We've come too far in the fight against doping to return to our past.

'Cycling has a future and something like this must never happen again.'

Armstrong always protested his innocence, but he has lost support from some of his major sponsors since USADA's report was made public.

Nike, Trek and Anheuser-Busch, brewers of Budweiser, all severed their ties with Armstrong, while fashion brand Oakley are reviewing their position in the wake of the doping scandal which has transcended sport.

Armstrong has also stepped down from his position as chairman of his cancer charity, Livestrong.

He made his first public appearance on Friday at the 15th anniversary celebration of the charity. He said to the 1,700-strong gathering: 'I am truly humbled by your support.

'It's been an interesting couple of weeks. It's been a difficult couple of weeks for me and my family, my friends and this foundation.

'I say, “I've been better, but I've also been worse”.'

Lance Armstrong sanctions ratified by UCI

Finally… UCI ratify Armstrong sanctions after years of ignorance over doping

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UPDATED:

11:15 GMT, 22 October 2012

Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles after
the sport's world governing body, the UCI, accepted the findings of the
United States Anti-Doping Agency's investigation.

Armstrong refused to co-operate with USADA, who earlier this month published
a 1,000-page report which concluded the Texan and his United States Postal
Service team ran 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping
programme that sport has ever seen'.

In accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code, the UCI had 21 days to
respond, until October 31, and president Pat McQuaid today announced the world
governing body would accept USADA's findings and ratified the sanctions imposed
on Armstrong.

It means the Texan has been stripped of all results since August 1, 1998 and
banned for life.

At a media conference in Geneva, McQuaid said: '(The UCI) will not appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport and it will recognise the sanctions that USADA has imposed.

'The UCI will ban Lance Armstrong from cycling and the UCI will strip him of his seven Tour de France titles. Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling.'

More to follow…

Shamed: Lance Armstrong, who finds out on Monday whether the USADA's report will be accepted by the UCI, spoke to participants at The Livestrong Challenge Ride in Austin, Texas, on Sunday

Shamed: Lance Armstrong, who finds out on Monday whether the USADA's report will be accepted by the UCI, spoke to participants at The Livestrong Challenge Ride in Austin, Texas, on Sunday


Fanbase: University of Texas college football fans sport Livestrong, Armstrong's cancer-fighting charity, t-shirts during their cancer-awareness game

Fanbase: University of Texas college football fans sport Livestrong, Armstrong's cancer-fighting charity, t-shirts during their cancer-awareness game

Banned: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour titles by the USADA, but claims he was the victim of a 'witch hunt'

Banned: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour titles by the USADA, but claims he was the victim of a 'witch hunt'


Support: Cyclists gathered to listen to Armstrong's address at the start of the annual Team Livestrong Challenge in Austin on Sunday

Support: Cyclists gathered to listen to Armstrong's address at the start of the annual Team Livestrong Challenge in Austin on Sunday