the skinny on the testing at the tour

Jul 2, 2009
AFLD Beats UCI, O-0

Sorting out the anti-doping turf match.

by Joe Lindsey

It’s no secret that the UCI doesn’t get along very well with the French national anti-doping agency, AFLD. First, AFLD’s smart and aggressive testing at the 2008 Tour de France (which took place because race organizers had a spat with the UCI and turned testing over to AFLD) caught a number of top riders.

Then, at last year’s race, the UCI’s own tests caught exactly zero riders. Which should be cause for celebration except that the AFLD alleged that certain teams had been given preferential treatment, like advance warning of what are supposed to be no-notice tests.

The UCI, of course, protested that allegation. But the biggest issue was that the UCI felt AFLD had unnecessarily made their criticisms public, when they should have been aired privately. And thus a long-contentious relationship fell apart entirely, with UCI president Pat McQuaid doing his best impression of **** Pound with colorful quotes, and AFLD’s Pierre Bordry returning serve.

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