The Road Season is Coming to an End

News & Results

09/26/2011| 0 comments
by Neil Browne
Mark Cavendish. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.
Mark Cavendish. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.

The Road Season is Coming to an End

The World Championships week is over - a sure sign that the season is winding down. However, that doesn't mean the drama is slowing down.

do I hate a tease...

Speaking of tears the World Championships wasn't the only news worthy event. The UCI held a press conference with President Pat McQuaid and the federation's drug czar Francesca Rossi. Some of the highlights include,

  • Race radios will be allowed in WorldTour races for another season as the UCI commissions an independent group to "study" the need for them in later years. And just a coincidence - no more team boycott of Tour of Beijing. This race is also coincidentally brought to you by the fine folks at the UCI.
  • McQuaid asked the media to stop being so focused on doping and talk about just cycling. Or hot wives and girlfriends (that edict was quickly executed as evidenced by the video footage of Peta Todd during the podium ceremony.)
  • That professional women's cycling wasn't at a level yet to be considered for a minimum salary.
  • On the UCI "still need to do list" - sue Floyd Landis.

To be honest, I'd forgotten that months ago the UCI said they were suing Landis. I asked Floyd for a "official" quote. As this is a work friendly site I can't write verbatim his response, but he questioned McQuaid's mental ability to function and then told me that the UCI president can suck something, followed by an invitation that he eat something which I'm sure no one in their right mind would want to out of obvious health concerns.

The other topic that surprised me was Mr. McQuaid's comments regarding minimum salaries for women racers. Just to be clear - I'm not so idealist as to demand that WorldTour teams should have a women's squad as well. Frankly, the money isn't there. And yes I know that HTC and Garmin-Cervélo were able to accommodate a women's roster, but that continues to be the exception, not the rule. However, to say that professional female cyclists don't deserve to have a basic salary level seems antiquated. I mean hell; even Saudi Arabia is allowing women to vote! I don't think they're asking too much to have some kind of decent salary.

Now that the World Championships are over there are only a few scraps left at the professional cycling table. Sure, there are a couple more Classics coming up but nothing that gets my heart racing. That's not to say I won't be up early to watch the Eurosport livestream - because trust me - I'll be there. And yeah, I guess we'll still have some doping scandals to focus on, even though the UCI told us not to. But for me Worlds is that Batman symbol in the sky alerting me to the fact that the road season is coming to an end. While racing on tarmac may be over, racing on 700cc wheels on the dirt is just beginning - I'm talking cyclocross (or cyclo-cross)! So break out the knobbies and embrocation - it's time to get muddy!

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