The agreement covering the Tour de France, is part of a cooperation agreement signed between the UCI on the one hand, represented by the CADF, and the AFLD on the other, which aims to ensure efficient anti-doping controls at all the major cycling competitions in France (Paris-Nice, Paris-Roubaix, Critérium du Dauphiné and Tour de France).
This partnership takes place while the UCI and the CADF continue sharing information and data on the athlete biological passport with National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs). This type of agreement, already in existence with UKAD (United Kingdom), CCES (Canada), ADN (Norway) and NADOF (Flanders), has been now signed with AFLD.
Regarding anti-doping controls for the Tour de France 2014, several measures have been put in place in order to ensure the maximum efficiency of the control system:
- Since last May, thanks to the location data provided by the CADF, the AFLD has carried out controls on a number of cyclists who will most likely participate in the “Grande Boucle”, supported if necessary by other national anti-doping agencies from neighbouring countries;
- Shortly before the start of the race, blood checks will be carried out on all participants;
- During the stages in the United Kingdom, AFLD, CADF and UKAD will collaborate in terms of logistic and intelligence information sharing;
- During the stages in France, the decision regarding which cyclists to test will be jointly decided by the CADF and the AFLD, on the basis of shared information, in order to have a well-targeted approach towards the riders;
- It was agreed that some samples will be kept, possibly for several years, in order to allow subsequent analyses with the benefit of technical progress concerning detection methods.
Reacting to the announcement, UCI President, Brian Cookson, stated: “I am particularly delighted by this agreement between the UCI and the CADF and AFLD on the Tour de France. This partnership demonstrates that all anti-doping organisations can join forces to ensure the reputation of cycling during one of the major events of its calendar and even of the international sporting one.”
Francesca Rossi, Director of the CADF, said: “The anti-doping programme put in place by this joint agreement, and covering this year’s Tour de France, has all the elements necessary to meet anti-doping objectives, both in terms of protecting the cyclists’ health and ensuring the sport’s ethics.”
Bruno Genevois, President of the AFLD, welcomed the agreement “reached in order to guarantee the integrity of a major cycling event.”