ASO: "UCI launches threats that are totally out of proportion." - IPCT wants CAS to interfere

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05.03.2008/ The Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) released a statement today saying that the "UCI launches threats that are totally out of proportion." Meanwhile the International Professional Cycling Teams (IPCT) wants the International Sports Court (CAS) to interfere and find a solution for the conflict.

The Amaury Sport Organisation reacted on yesterdays threads of UCI president Patrick McQuaid. In a statement ASO said: "A few days before the start of Paris-Nice, A.S.O. wishes to make a point after the controversies and the recent threats launched by the UCI."

ASO repeated that Paris - Nice will take place under the umbrella of the French cycling federatiuon (FFC) and that 20 teams will start at the French stage race which will start on Sunday: "A.S.O. again maintains the legality of Paris-Nice, organised under the control of the French Cycling Federation (FFC) and in harmony with the French law. A.S.O. wishes to underline that it has the support of the Ministry for Sports and of the French Agency against Doping (AFLD) for the organisation of this race. The AIGCP has just on its side confirmed the will of the 20 teams invited to take part in this event and has given its agreement on the convention negociated yesterday in a constructive spirit."

The French race organiser says it asked the UCI two "simple things". ASO asked the UCI "that Paris-Nice, that will be celebrating its 75 years, remains considered as a major historical race in the World calendar. The wish of all the teams to take part just shows its success and its prestige."

ASO also asked: "that A.S.O. be in measure, for the Tour de France, to choose the team selection system, in other words an open system based on sporting and ethical criterias, and not the closed and arbitrary system commended by the UCI in the frame of the Pro Tour. Concerning that issue, deploring the threats that they have been subjected to, six European federations, and not the slightest (Italy, Spain, Luxemburg, France, Austria, Belgium) have just reminded that they had been hostile for several years to the Pro Tour in its current shape."

The statement concluded with: "Facing this situation, the UCI launches threats that are totally out of proportion towards the riders and the teams (fines, suspensions, exclusions…). A.S.O. insists on reminding that in no manner it wishes to challenge the authority of the UCI, but that it simply wants to insure the status of a major and undisputed event like it should be by the entire cycling World, including the UCI. A.S.O. deplores that the UCI, through its threats, harms the preparation to Paris-Nice, worries the sponsors and the riders and therefore contributes in the deterioration of cycling’s image."

IPCT wants CAS to interfere 

Belgian website reported that the International Professional Cycling Teams (IPCT) tries to find a solution for the conflict between ASO and the UCI. IPCT president Patrick Lefevere proposed that the International Sports Court (CAS) should interfere in order to find a way out. Lefevere also proposed that all races organised by ASO should take place under the umbrella of the UCI and the UCI should drop their demand that all Pro - Tour teams will be guaranteed a right to start at the Tour de France.  The IPCT also proposes to start talks with independent moderators, choosen and approved by all parties.

According to UCI president Patrick McQuaid seems to move his position. McQuaid said: "I would like to point out that we are demanding that all Pro-Tour teams will be allowed to ride the Tour on requestof the teams."

McQuaid continued by saying: "But if the teams are now abandon from the right to participate at the Tour or want to refuse an invitation from the Tour they should let the UCI know."

McQuaid said: "If the rules are respected and the teams ask the UCI to change this sentence in our regulation than the UCI is prepared to do so."

The International Professional Cycling Teams (IPCT) is an organisation that defends the economic interests of the pro teams.

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