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Time trialling dope cheats forced to pay £1,000 before being allowed to race again

Joseph Delves
11 Dec 2019

Cycling Time Trials institutes new rule to further punish dopers

Updated rules released by Cycling Time Trials, the national governing body for racing against the clock, mean anyone caught doping at its events will have to pay an additional £1,000 fine before being allowed to compete in further races.

Regulation 25 of the updated rules now states: 'Any person whom at an anti-doping control at an Event has provided a sample that subsequently returned an adverse analytical finding that results in a sanction that such person is ineligible for competition for a period of time, shall pay a fine to Cycling Time Trials of £1000. Any such person shall not be eligible to compete in any Event until such time as such fine has been paid.'

National Secretary Nick Sharpe explained, 'CTT is made up of 22 district branches. At this year’s AGM on 1st December, one of them suggested the idea of fining anyone found guilty of a doping offence. Taken on by the board, who proposed the motion, it was passed unanimously by all 72 delegates.'

Although you’d hope your local club Tuesday night 10-mile TT isn’t populated by desperate drug cheats, should you be inclined to be: one - dishonest enough to dope and two - stupid enough to get caught, you’ll now face a further sanction on top of any racing ban.

For each event held under the auspices of CTT a small levy goes to the organisation itself. In 2018 its income totalled around £500,000. Of this 10% was spent on administering around 50 random drugs tests across its events.

Conducted by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD), the cost of each test starts at £700, with further add-ons bringing the total for most to around £1,000. Should a rider be found to have returned an adverse analytical finding, the standard minimum ban if it’s deemed to have been a deliberate rather than accidental violation is four years, as set by UKAD.

The further £1,000 fine that must also be paid following the ban exists separately from this and is part of the terms and conditions riders agree to abide by when signing up for one of CTT’s events.

Sharpe explained the figure was arrived at because it closely mirrors the cost of administering one future drug test.

While for many riders time-trailing means racing with clubmates on a weekday evening, tests carried out at the organisation’s events have previously caught out cheats.

In 2016, National 12-hour time trial champion Robin Townsend was banned after testing positive for the stimulant modafinil at a 100-mile event.

Ensuring competitors prepared to cheat will now face a further hurdle before being allowed back into CTT events should add an extra level of reassurance that your local 25-mile record won’t be stolen by some juiced up miscreant.

Distinct from the far larger and better-funded British Cycling, Cycling Time Trials supervises individual and team time trials in England and Wales. More details on the organisation and its events can be found here: cyclingtimetrials.org.uk