Cyclists To Get Confidential UCI Doping Hotline

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LAUSANNE, Nov 13, 2012 (AFP) – A doping hotline is to be set up for
cyclists who want to blow the whistle on fellow riders, the International
Cycling Union (UCI) said Tuesday.

“During the coming weeks … the UCI will be looking into establishing a
new open line – a confidential hotline’,” said Pat McQuaid, head of the
sport’s world governing body in an online statement on the UCI website.

Addressing riders directly, McQuaid said more needed to be done “to ensure
that the UCI is as accessible as possible, and in particular to you the
riders, should you wish to discuss issues or concerns relating to doping.”

It would take time to build trust in the telephone hotline, McQuaid said,
adding that he was “confident that, with the best intentions from both sides,
we can build that trust” and “accelerate the change in culture that we need in
our sport.”

The move, also announced on cycling website cyclingnews.com, follows a
turbulent ride for the sport’s governing body in recent months over the Lance
Armstrong scandal.

Last month the UCI ratified the decision by the United States Anti-Doping
Agency to strip the fallen cycling icon of his seven Tour de France titles and
ban him from the sport for life.

Also last month a Swiss court found dope-tarnished American cyclist Floyd
Landis guilty of defaming the UCI.

Landis had accused McQuaid and his predecessor Hein Verbruggen of
concealing cases of doping and taking a bribe from Armstrong for doing so.

In the UCI announcement McQuaid also rejected complaints by some riders
that the governing body had not followed up their tip-offs.

“I would like to take this opportunity to assure you that the UCI did act
on information provided in the past and it will always do so in the future,
within the bounds of what is legally feasible,” McQuaid said.

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