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British Cycling president who is challenging for top spot at UCI also heading to Africa ahead of manifesto launch

British Cycling president Brian Cookson says he is “disturbed” by what he has learnt from a confidential dossier compiled on Pat McQuaid, the man he is seeking to replace as UCI president.

That dossier was compiled by former USA Cycling president Mike Plant, like Cookson a member of the UCI Management Committee, which is chaired by McQuaid.

It was presented to members of the committee on Friday, the second day of its meeting in Bergen, Norway, after McQuaid had succeeded in preventing having its contents discussed the previous day.

For now, the contents, believed to have been compiled with the help of private investigators and to include details of McQuaid and the UCI’s role in the Lance Armstrong affair, remain confidential.

Writing on his blog, Cookson, whose manifesto for September’s UCI presidential election will be unveiled in Paris next Monday 24 June, said: “I have to respect the confidentiality of the Management Committee with regards to the contents of the dossier with which we were presented.

“But what I can say is that I was disturbed by what I heard and I have been assured it will be properly investigated.”

Speaking to the website Inside The Games at the weekend, Plant confirmed that he had withdrawn his support for McQuaid, who on Saturday had his nomination to stand for a third term rejected by a vote at an Emergency General Meeting of Cycling Ireland.

The UCI president is now relying on a nomination from Swiss Cycling, the national governing body for the country where the UCI is based and where he lives; however, that itself is subject to a legal challenge.

"I can no longer support the current President of the UCI," said Plant, who was unable to give details of the specific contents of the dossier and instead confined himself to speaking about his general thoughts.

"This is a critical turning point in the history of our sport, and strong, credible leadership has never been more important,” he said.

"The impact of the decisions being made today will be felt for generations to come.

"What the sport of cycling needs most at this crucial time in its history is to be guided by a consistent set of values.

"This isn't a time for self-interest; this is a time for doing what is in the best interest of the sport.

"That's my primary objective for the sport I have been a part of for 40 years.

"I learned long ago that ethics and integrity cannot be situational; they must be constant and unwavering," he added.

Cookson meanwhile is on the campaign trail this week, revealing in his blog that he was travelling to Morocco for the meeting of the African Cycling Confederation, as the work to secure support for his candidacy among delegates at the UCI Congress in Florence in September begins in earnest.

“My visit to Africa will be invaluable as it will give me an opportunity to hear first-hand the changes that need to be made to strengthen competition structures and increase participation at all levels across the continent,” he said.

“We need to ensure that we, as a sport that still has so much potential across the world, make the most of the opportunities that may come our way.”

Cookson also confirmed that he had stepped down from representing British Cycling on Team Sky’s operational board after announcing his intention to stand for election as UCI president.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

15 comments

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cat1commuter [1422 posts] 4 years ago
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Cookson doesn't say the dossier was about Pat McQuaid, does he?

I don't understand this:

Quote:

It was presented to members of the committee on Friday, the second day of its meeting in Bergen, Norway, after McQuaid had succeeded in having its contents discussed the previous day.

Assuming that the dossier is about McQuaid, was McQuaid really trying to get the dossier about himself discussed? Wasn't it Plant who succeeded in getting it discussed?

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Critchio [227 posts] 4 years ago
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I hope in time the contents of that dossier will become public, by whatever means. IF there is truly damning evidence of McQ's mismanagement and even corruption at the top of the UCI then the cycling world has a right to know and should know, so that it can be realised and a solid line drawn under it so the cycling world can move on anew.

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Simon_MacMichael [2492 posts] 4 years ago
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Ahem, cheers Cat1, there was a missing word there: "after McQuaid had succeeded in *preventing* having its contents discussed the previous day."

Which should make more sense.

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Simmo72 [647 posts] 4 years ago
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'LETS GET READY TO CRUMBLE'

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The Rumpo Kid [589 posts] 4 years ago
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"I have been assured it will be properly investigated." Who gave this assurance? And who will investigate?

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Sam1 [220 posts] 4 years ago
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Cookson's off to start the process of canvassing the African feds - good, this is a regional block vote for McQuaid, as things stand.

Though at this rate you have to wonder whether even slippery Pat will make it to Sep...

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theincrediblebike [40 posts] 4 years ago
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Probably going be investigated by Pat McQuaud Private eye and all round general bullshit department. Please get this chump out of cycling.

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Argos74 [434 posts] 4 years ago
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Quote:

“I have to respect the confidentiality of the Management Committee with regards to the contents of the dossier with which we were presented.

“But what I can say is that I was disturbed by what I heard and I have been assured it will be properly investigated.”

Am no fan of McQuaid, but... dox? Plz?

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monty dog [463 posts] 4 years ago
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Pat will appoint Hein and his cronies in the IOC to undertake an "official investigation"

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wild man [297 posts] 4 years ago
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Maybe the dossier has been 'sexed up' and Pat is totally blameless.

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fuzzywuzzy [84 posts] 4 years ago
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Lets hope it's leaked soon, I'm guessing it's about his financial dealings (it seems his half a million quid salary isn't enough) from promoting new races in cash-rich countries. I wouldn't care so much if it wasn't at the expense of women's cycling but he's allowing that to die as there's no opportunity to line his own pockets from it.

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Sam1 [220 posts] 4 years ago
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Where do you get the half a mill salary figure from? His salary details arent in the public domain - something that Cookson's committed to change if he gets elected.

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Decster [246 posts] 4 years ago
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Mike Plant is part of USAC who are owned by Thom Weisel the guy who bankrolled Armstrong and who invested the $500k nike gave Hein to bury the Armstrong positives in 99TdF.

Plant aint no fan of clean cycling. Cookson better be careful who he is aligning with.

The people who run cycling are rotten to core, dont expect that to change anytime soon.

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BigBear63 [80 posts] 4 years ago
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When running for public office it is important to take account of public sentiment and the general pervading mood, especially of those close to the election machinery even if it can be viewed as mere politics.

At some point a candidates position becomes untenable and that is where we are at at the moment with McQuaid. He wants to go out with a bang not a whimper but he must put the sport, and its supporters, first. Clearly, he is not doing that but even if he gets Swiss support he is, unfortunately for him, tarnished and in politics that is as damning as absolute guilt. The sooner he does the decent, honourable thing the better for all.

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BigBear63 [80 posts] 4 years ago
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I agree on all points. Politics is dirty so many in the upper echelons of cycling will feel comfortable.

Cookson appears to be savvy about allegiances but only time will tell. Gotta be better than McQuaid, and there's no-one else in the running is there?