UCI Management Committee approves the Federation’s Agenda 2030 and awards the first UCI Gravel World Championships

The Management Committee of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) met from 14 to 16 June in Arzon (France) for its second ordinary session of the year.

At this meeting, it approved the Federation's Agenda 2030. Following on from the Agenda 2022, of which almost all the objectives have now been achieved, this new document will form the UCI's roadmap for the next eight years. The objectives presented in Agenda 2030, which aim to make cycling the sport of the 21st century, to make it more inclusive and to develop a lifestyle around cycling, are based on the following axes:

  • the development of cycling around the world and the strengthening of its universality,

  • innovation and development of competitions,

  • the consolidation of actions supporting National Federations and the strengthening of the UCI's solidarity programmes,

  • the promotion of sustainable cycling,

  • the protection of athletes and the guarantee of equal opportunities,

  • the promotion of Olympic values and the consolidation of the UCI's good governance.

The Agenda 2030 will be published on the UCI website in nine languages once it has been presented to the next UCI Congress, to be held on 22 September 2022 in Wollongong (Australia).

The UCI Management Committee also approved the 2021 UCI Financial Report. This report shows a final annual result that is better than expected in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, amounting to 21.3 million Swiss francs. This result could be achieved thanks to the implementation of a vast savings plan, prudent management of activities, the good performance of the UCI's investment portfolio and the receipt of the UCI’s share of Olympic revenue after the successful staging of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in 2021. In addition, the target of a minimum reserve threshold of 20 million Swiss francs (excluding buildings and fixed assets) as of 2020 is met (current amount: 38.2 million Swiss francs). The reserves will decrease until the end of the Olympic cycle, but will remain above the set threshold.

These figures show that the UCI is in a healthy financial situation - despite the difficulties experienced -, which provides a solid basis for continuing to develop cycling, ensuring the Federation's solidarity programmes, particularly for its National Federations, and facing any new headwinds with confidence.

The 2021 UCI Financial Report will be published on the Federation's website at the end of June together with the full 2021 UCI Annual Report.

The UCI Management Committee also awarded the following UCI World Championships:

2022 and 2023 UCI Gravel World Championships

The two forthcoming editions of the event will take place in Italy, the first in the Veneto region in the north-east of the country on 8 and 9 October 2022, the second on 30 September and 1st October 2023 in a location to be confirmed. The host cities will be announced later. These will be the first UCI World Championships for gravel, a discipline that this year sees the introduction of the first edition of the UCI Gravel World Series.

2023 UCI Cycling Esports World Championships

The event, organised by Zwift, will take place in the second half of February 2023 (exact date to be confirmed). The virtual route will be open to subscribers to the Zwift platform. The qualifying competitions will take place in November 2022.

As for the dates of the 2024 UCI Emerging Cycling Countries World Championships, awarded to Cairo (Egypt) at the UCI Management Committee meeting in September 2021, these have been confirmed: the event will take place from 2 to 10 March 2024. Further information on the event will be communicated in due course.

Still concerning events, the UCI Management Committee approved the following calendars:

2023 UCI Women’s WorldTour

Four new events will join this calendar: The Women’s Santos Tour Down Under (which had UCI ProSeries status in 2020 then was cancelled in 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic), the UAE Tour (new event which joins the existing men’s competition), the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad (which moves from UCI ProSeries status to UCI Women’s WorldTour status) and the Tour de Suisse (also moving from UCI ProSeries status to UCI Women’s WorldTour status).

2023 UCI WorldTour

The events on this calendar, previously approved by the Professional Cycling Council at its meeting on 2 June 2022, are registered for the 2023-2025 cycle subject to the successful organisation of each edition of the concerned races.

2023 UCI Road International Calendar (events taking place between 19 October and 31 December 2022)

2022-2023 UCI Track International Calendar

These four calendars can be consulted on the UCI website.

The 2022-2023 UCI Track International Calendar includes the UCI Track Cycling Champions League, which will be held this year for the second time after a successful 2021 edition despite the cancellation of several rounds in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic.

2022 UCI Track Cycling Champions League:

  • Round 1: Palma de Mallorca (Spain), 12 November

  • Round 2: Berlin (Germany), 19 November

  • Round 3: Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (France), 26 November

  • Round 4: London (Great Britain), 2 December

  • Final: London (Great Britain), 3 December

Regarding the 2022 UCI WorldTour and UCI Women’s WorldTour the UCI Management Committee has taken note of the cancellation of two races that were scheduled to take place in China at the end of the 2022 season. These cancellations concern the UCI WorldTour event the Gree-Tour of Guangxi, which had been scheduled for 13 to 18 October, as well as the UCI Women's WorldTour race Tour of Guangxi (18 October). These cancellations follow decisions taken by the organisers due to measures in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic that remain applicable. The 2022 UCI WorldTour will therefore conclude on 8 October with Il Lombardia (Italy), while the 2022 UCI Women's WorldTour will end on 15 October, the last day of the Tour of Chongming Island (China). In line with the UCI WorldTour season approved in June 2021, the UCI Management Committee confirmed that the date of the end of the 2022 road season remains 18 October. This is the date of the last day of the Tour de Langkawi (UCI ProSeries), which will take place in Malaysia from 11 to 18 October.

At the 2022 edition of the UCI Women’s WorldTour event RideLondon Classique (Great Britain), the event organisers did not provide the required live TV coverage of each stage, but only of the last stage. This constitutes a breach of the UCI Regulations and of the specifications that every organiser of the UCI Women's WorldTour is required to respect. It is also, first and foremost, an unacceptable lack of respect for the teams and riders involved in the competition. For this reason, the UCI Management Committee has taken the decision to make the registration of the event on the UCI Women's WorldTour calendar for the 2023 season conditional to the presentation of firm commitments concerning the live TV broadcasting of all the stages. In the meantime, the Management Committee has taken the decision to register the RideLondon Classique in the UCI ProSeries class for the 2023 season. For the UCI, daily live TV coverage of the UCI Women's WorldTour events, which include the most prestigious races in women's professional road cycling, is fundamental to ensure its continued international development. A final decision on the status of this race will be taken at the UCI Management Committee meeting in September.

The UCI Management Committee has been informed by the President of the current state of discussions between certain stakeholders in professional road cycling and the UCI on the establishment of an in-depth reform of men's and women's professional cycling. The UCI welcomes the fact that the three main organisers and the owners of men's and women's teams share its conviction that the organisation of road cycling must evolve.

The quality of the discussions held has been commended, and the parties are aware of the need to work together to promote cycling, a sport that offers great opportunities for development.

The parties will continue to meet to develop a common vision. This vision will be presented to all stakeholders (teams, riders, organisers and National Federations) in order to build road cycling together to make it stronger than ever.

The UCI will communicate further once a detailed common vision has been finalised.

Still concerning sport, following the success of the team relay test event at the 2022 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships in Fayetteville (USA), the UCI Management Committee has decided to integrate this new relay into the programme of future editions of the event, starting with the 2023 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships to be held from 3 to 5 February in Hoogerheide (Netherlands). The race format will be based on that of the highly popular team relay at the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships.

In March 2020, the UCI published rules governing the participation of transgender athletes in events on the UCI International Calendar in the category corresponding to their new gender identity. Although these rules are stricter and more restrictive than those published by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 2015, the UCI has begun consideration on their adjustment following the publication of new scientific studies in 2020 and 2021.

The principle of eligibility of transgender athletes (in particular female athletes, ie those who have made a transition from male to female) is based on the reversibility under low blood testosterone (the level commonly observed in "born female" athletes) of the physiological abilities that determine sports performance, and on the time needed to achieve this reversibility.

The latest scientific publications clearly demonstrate that the return of markers of endurance capacity to "female level" occurs within six to eight months under low blood testosterone, while the awaited adaptations in muscle mass and muscle strength/power take much longer (two years minimum according to a recent study). Given the important role played by muscle strength and power in cycling performance, the UCI has decided to increase the transition period on low testosterone from 12 to 24 months. In addition, the UCI has decided to lower the maximum permitted plasma testosterone level (currently 5 nmol/L) to 2.5 nmol/L. This value corresponds to the maximum testosterone level found in 99.99% of the female population.

This adjustment of the UCI's eligibility rules is based on the state of scientific knowledge published to date in this area and is intended to promote the integration of transgender athletes into competitive sport, while maintaining fairness, equal opportunities and the safety of competitions. The new rules will come into force on 1st July. They may change in the future as scientific knowledge evolves.

Moreover, the UCI envisages discussions with other International Federations about the possibility of supporting a research programme whose objective would be to study the evolution of the physical performance of highly trained athletes under transitional hormone treatment.

For more information: Prof. Xavier Bigard, “The current knowledge on the effects of gender-affirming treatment on markers of performance in transgender female cyclists, updated June 2022

The situation of the Ukrainian cycling community in relation to the Russian invasion of Ukraine was discussed. The UCI Management Committee, which had taken a series of strong measures against Russia at the beginning of March, agreed to continue to follow the development of the situation and to remain in line with decisions taken by the IOC. As a reminder, since the start of the war in Ukraine in February, the UCI has worked closely with the President of the Ukrainian National Olympic Committee and IOC member Sergey Bubka as well as with the European Cycling Union (Union Européenne de Cyclisme - UEC), presided by Mr Enrico Della Casa. Together, they assisted the Ukrainian riders on their arrival in Switzerland, where the majority of the athletes were hosted by the Swiss National Federation, Swiss Cycling. A support unit providing assistance to athletes across Europe has been set up at the UCI and is coordinated by Ms Tetiana Dziadevych, Secretary General of the Ukrainian Cycling Federation, under the aegis of the UCI International Relations Department. The UCI acts as a single point of entry for the management of the Ukrainian cycling situation.

Finally, the UCI Management Committee members welcomed the launch of the "UCI Cycling Integrity" brand at the beginning of May. "UCI Cycling Integrity" is a programme bringing together all the UCI's actions dedicated to promoting integrity in cycling at all levels (athletes, entourage and competitions). These actions are based on the UCI’s Code of Ethics, its preventive actions, its education programmes, and its information and awareness campaigns. The objectives of "UCI Cycling Integrity" are based on three axes: "Clean cycling" (fight against doping), "Safe cycling" (fight against harassment and other abuse) and "Fair cycling" (fight against technological fraud and other manipulations).

At the end of the three days of meeting, UCI President David Lappartient declared:

“The approval of the Agenda 2030 to follow on from the Agenda 2022, whose objectives have nearly all been achieved, marks the beginning of a new era of progress for cycling. Within this new framework, we will continue the efforts already being made and put even greater emphasis on all the initiatives that will increasingly place cycling at the heart of the positive transformation of our societies in a context that is both challenging and rich in opportunities for the future. As our 2021 Annual Report shows, the UCI, together with the cycling community, is in a situation - particularly financially - that enables it to move in this direction.

"After the launch of a UCI World Series, the award of the first two editions of the UCI Gravel World Championships is an important step in the development of a fast-growing discipline that responds to the desire of an increasing part of the population to get back to nature. This new event shows that cycling never stops evolving – as demonstrated in track cycling for which we have just confirmed the calendar for the 2022 UCI Track Champions League - to ensure it is at the forefront of cyclists’ expectations, whether they are competitors or not.

"As for the arrival of new events to the UCI Women's WorldTour calendar, this is evidence of the growing strength of women's road cycling. Indeed, more and more organisers of men's events are creating women's races that will also become major events on the UCI International Calendar.

"With the adaptation of new rules for the participation of transgender athletes in competitions on the UCI International Calendar, our sport has a regulation that is fully consistent with the most recent scientific knowledge in this area. It is indeed important in this field to rely on objective knowledge to reconcile the very real need for inclusion with the essential need for fairness.”

The next UCI Management Committee meeting will be held in Wollongong (Australia) from 19 to 21 September during the 2022 UCI Road World Championships.