January 6/98 14:00 pm - World Cup to Canada, Pezzo Clarification
Posted by Editor on 01/6/98
Track World Cup
We have just learned (about 10 minutes ago from the CCA)that Canada will host a Track World Cup this year! The UCI approached Canada after receiving word from the organizers of the Indianapolis World Cup that they would not be able to put on their event, scheduled for May 30-31. Victoria, B.C., site of the 1994 Commonwealth Games, recently announced their interest in hosting a World Cup in 1999, but Pierre Hutsebault, Director of National Racing Programs at the CCA received a call from the UCI just before Christmas asking whether they organizers could take over the U.S. event dates. Just a few minutes ago the UCI called Mr Hutsebault to tell him that Victoria has been awarded the event. At this point, that is all the news there is, but we will keep you updated as more information becomes available.
With so many rumours, accusations and speculation swirling around the Paola Pezzo positive drug test result, and the ramifications of the result, we decided that we needed to do some more research into the possible outcomes of this event. After talking with various officials, and checking into the rules, here is where things stand:
1. Pezzo tested positive at the Annecy World Cup Final, and her appeal of the result to the Italian Olympic Committee was rejected.
2. She goes before the Italian cycling federation for disciplinary action at the end of this week, where possible bans and/or warnings can be imposed.
In Canada or the United States, appeals of doping charges go before the country's Olympic Committee (COA in Canada, USOC in USA, CONI in Italy). The sports federation (eg, cycling) sets the penalty for a doping charge, but does not overturn Olympic Committee results. From what we have been able to determine, the process is the same in Italy. In that situation (ie, the cycling federation sets penalties, does not rule on the actual validity of the result) Pezzo would be automatically removed from the results of the race in which she tested positive - the World Cup Final. Since she would then lose her points for this race, and she did not have enough points without the race to win the World Cup title, she would lose the World cup overall title to the next highest points getter - Alison Sydor. We would like to stress that this is OUR analysis of the situation - the UCI has not yet made any ruling (they are waiting for the Italian federation hearing before doing anything).
With respect to bans, the World Championships, etc. the situation is somewhat different. Pezzo will NOT lose her World title, no matter what ban may or may not be imposed. Any ban would not take place until after the appeal process had been exhausted, so results prior to this (eg, the World Championships) would not be affected. If a ban were imposed, it would likely begin sometime this month (after the current series of hearings). We mistakenly speculated that a ban would be retroactive, and affect Pezzo's World's result. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused.