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Fabian Cancellara: UCI should focus on foundations of pro cycling, not motor doping

Peter Stuart
2 Nov 2017

Speaking at a Gore Bike Wear event, Cancellara casts doubts on the prevalence of motor doping in the pro peloton

Four time World Time-Trial Champion and legend of the Classics Fabian Cancellara believes the UCI should focus more on the health and foundations of pro cycling and the financial structure of the sport, rather than investing in motor doping detection.

Cancellara has himself been the subject of conspiracy theories alleging that some of his success on the bike was the result of a hidden motor in his frame.

Yet despite these rumours having been persistently debunked, and indeed no motor having ever been found amongst the bikes of WorldTour riders, new UCI president David Lappartient has announced a high-profile campaign against motor doping. 

Asked whether he thought motor doping was a problem in the pro peloton today, Cancellara said, ‘No.’

When asked about the potential abuse of the technology in the past, however, he was slightly more guarded, saying ‘it’s hard to say,’ whether the technology was used in the past.

Building foundation

Cancellara was speaking at an event in West London with Gore Bike Wear, who have appointed the Swiss former pro as a brand ambassador. He will be involved in the development and design of the kit as well as championing the brand internationally.

Cancellara rode around Richmond Park for several hours this morning before settling down in Hampton Wick for lunch, and then spoke at Sigma Sport in a public Q&A. Before which Cyclist discussed the new president's motor doping priorities with him. 

‘I don’t want to comment specifically yet on the new president’s ideas, as long as I haven’t read what he’s said personally,’ Cancellara explained. However, he was clear in what his vision was for what work Lappartient had ahead of him.

‘The president has to work at how he can combine the efforts of different organisations in cycling and the teams, for instance better cooperation between ASO and the UCI. That’s more important than just doping, as cycling will sink if this foundation isn’t there.’

‘It’s good to look at doping or motor doping, but these things cost money,’ Cancellara said. ‘We have to look also at how money can come into the sport, not only for the UCI but for the teams, and for the riders. The president has a lot to do – reducing the teams to 6 or 8 riders, for instance, is just part of it.’

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