The 187th annual Congress of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) was held today in Innsbruck, Austria, during the 2018 UCI Road World Championships. It brought together representatives of 130 of the UCI’s member National Federations, a participation record that bears witness to the Federations’ growing implication in the development of cycling.
It was the first Congress presided by UCI President David Lappartient, who welcomed the presence of Mr Francesco Ricci Bitti, President of the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF).
Four new members joined the UCI in Innsbruck, with the Congress approving the official affiliation of the Federations of the Republic of Chad, the Republic of Cape Verde, the Cook Islands, and the British Virgin Islands. The UCI now counts an unprecedented number of 194 affiliated National Federations. Its objective is to increase this total to 200 by 2022.
The members of Congress were given a presentation of cycling’s Agenda 2022, presenting the major objectives of the UCI up to the end of the first mandate of its President David Lappartient. Central elements of this programme, solidarity actions led by the new Solidarity and Emerging Cycling Countries Commission, were presented, the day after the conference on this theme organised in Innsbruck in collaboration with Olympic Solidarity. In line with the commitments made by its President, the UCI will strengthen its support to National Federations and Continental Confederations.
In the same domain, the UCI World Cycling Centre (WCC) Director shared with the participating National Federations, the UCI WCC’s vision for the years to come. This vision is built on three principal axes: training of high-level athletes from the five continents, the development of a new World Cycling University dedicated to the provision of training in diverse professions within cycling, and solidarity actions.
On the subject of anti-doping, the Congress commended the report of the Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation (CADF) and the arrival of Professor Xavier Bigard at the UCI. He is very involved in the drafting of legislative provisions aiming to ban any rider having used Tramadol or corticosteroids from starting a race.
The delegates welcomed the UCI’s drive in the fight against technological fraud. As a reminder, this programme includes tests carried out with the help of new-generation magnetic-scanning technology, X-rays and thermal imaging as well as information-gathering. Developments are ongoing to further expand the range of equipment at the UCI’s disposal.
Still on the subject of the protection of the sport’s integrity, Congress accepted a modification to the UCI Statutes ensuring greater transparency in the area of finances and also at Continental Confederation elections.
On the sporting side, Congress participants applauded the record number of World Championships awarded the previous day by the Management Committee for the period 2020-2024, bearing witness to the appeal of cycling’s major sporting events. They also heard that the cities of Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (France) and Vancouver (Canada) had been awarded the UCI Bike City label and that the Management Committee had approved the following calendars:
Likewise, members approved the major progress made by the UCI in the sectors of men’s and women’s professional road cycling, made possible by the united collaboration of the sport’s different stakeholders
Congress approved the UCI’s 2017 financial statements as well as the 2019 budget, which amounts to 47 million Swiss Francs.
Members of Congress also ratified the arrival of UCI Athletes’ Commission President Katerina Nash as full member of the UCI Management Committee.
The Congress awarded the UCI Merit, a distinction in recognition in principle of people demonstrating an outstanding commitment to cycling, to Ms Hadja Aminata Mara, Mr José Luis López Cerrón, Mr Chayol Koo, the Tour de France and the great Eddy Merckx, who received a standing ovation from the Congress participants.
Finally, the UCI President David Lappartient expressed words of encouragement for track cycling multiple UCI World Champion Kristina Vogel, victim of a terrible accident during training in the summer which has left her paralysed.
At the end of Congress, UCI President David Lappartient declared: “I am delighted that an unprecedented number of National Federations has come to the annual UCI Congress this year in Innsbruck, and to have observed their desire to support the objectives of our Agenda 2022. We have never been so many nor, I am convinced, so united behind a project for the global growth of our sport. At the end of my first year at the head of the UCI, this is a tremendous encouragement to continue our commitment in this direction.”