In particular, on 1st March, the UCI withdrew UCI team status from all Russian and Belarusian teams. One of these teams was the UCI ProTeam (2nd division) Gazprom - RusVelo.
Moreover, the UCI took a second measure directly affecting the team, that of declaring any sponsorship by Russian and Belarusian companies or brands as harmful to the image of cycling. Under article 1.1.089 of the UCI Regulations, any display of the sponsor Gazprom, as well as the name RusVelo, is therefore prohibited from all events on the UCI International Calendar until further notice.
The UCI understands that as a result of this latest measure in particular, the main sponsor has terminated its contract with the team, leaving the paying agent unable to ensure the team's funding for the 2022 season.
Faced with this difficult situation for the athletes, the UCI immediately informed the paying agent of the possible solutions and conditions for a return to competition. These mainly concern the nationality of the team, which may be modified given the paying agent’s domiciliation in Switzerland, and the financial capacity of the team.
These conditions still apply and will be considered in determining any request from the paying agent.
Besides the information provided to the team concerning a possible return to competition, the UCI has also replied to all communications and requests from riders. The requests made to the UCI - whether from the team or the riders - could unfortunately not be considered as they required the UCI to bear the costs of the team.
Regarding the protection for riders, the UCI reminded them and the Cyclistes Professionnels Associés (CPA) of the existence of a bank guarantee imposed by the UCI Regulations that enables three months' salary to be covered for all riders and staff in the event of default of payment.
Despite several reminders of this possibility to the riders and the CPA, the UCI has not, to date, received any request in this regard and is not informed of the payment status of salaries.
Furthermore, following the decision of the UCI Management Committee on 1st March, a derogation to the rules governing transfers was granted to the riders concerned in order to allow them to change teams at any time during the season and thus facilitate the pursuit of their careers in another team.
Some of the team's riders have taken advantage of this provision to join other UCI Teams.
Since 1st March, the UCI has never ceased to communicate regularly with the teams concerned and to respond to all their requests and those of their riders. The UCI remains at the disposal of the team management and the riders to work with them towards the best possible solution.