Posted by Editoress on 08/11/11
Gerard Vroomen, co-founder of the Canadian bike company Cervélo, has provoked an immediate and angry response from the UCI over comments he made on his personal blog yesterday regarding the biological passport and testing program. On his blog, Vroomen stated that he was unaware of any out-of-competition testing of riders under the program since the end of last year's (2010) Tour de France and April of this year; statements which were subsequently reported by some media. Read the full blog entry here.
The UCI issued the following statement today, rejecting those allegations, and providing statistics of tests undertaken. It should be noted, however, that these are stats for all tests during this period, including the in-competition ones. A more useful statistic in refuting Vroomen's claim would be the specific out-of-competition tests.
The International Cycling Union categorically rejects the allegations published by Mr. Gerard Vroomen on his personal blog yesterday concerning biological passports, comments which were then relayed by the velonation.com website. The UCI has therefore decided to provide the following statement in order to protect the public image of cycling and in particular with due respect to the commitment of those working on daily basis in the fight against doping.
The allegation that no tests were carried out under the biological passport testing program between the end of the Tour de France 2010 and April 2011 is absolutely incorrect, as the statistics below clearly demonstrate.
General statistics for Blood Passport Tests only (excluding urine tests and Tour de France 2010) from July 1st, 2010, until April 30th, 2011 (period referred to by Mr Vroomen):
This includes out-of-competition controls, pre-competition and in-competition controls on all major events during this period and team training camps.
01.07.2010 - 31.12.2010: 45
01.07.2010 - 30.04.2011: 68
The assertions made by Gerard Vroomen's are misleading, irresponsible, mischievous and clearly show a very weak understanding of this complex subject, an area which goes well beyond financial questions alone. The UCI considers Mr Vroomen's comments particularly unacceptable given the years of research and investments in this area. The result of UCI's anti-doping work has been unanimously recognized by international experts and its program has become a worldwide reference in the fight against doping.
The UCI highlights the exceptional quality of competition at the recent Tour de France 2011, a Tour which also reflected a cleaner era in cycling. Mr Vroomen appears exceptionally poorly informed as he would seem not to have been aware of the tests carried out on the two teams he has been involved with. A simple phone call could have clarified the situation for Mr Vrooman should his concerns have been genuine, but he chose not to do this.
Further the UCI refutes any suggestion that anti-doping funds have been used to fund legal bills for fighting legal cases.
The UCI therefore suggests that Mr Vroomen, and the media, ensure that facts are correct before making public statements about UCI's activities.
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