New UCI president David Lappartient has said that he wants to introduce a full ban on corticosteroids from 2019. The move would mean that drugs such as triamcinolone, which was used by Sir Bradley Wiggins ahead of the 2012 Tour de France, could no longer be administered under a therapeutic use exemption (TUE).
In March, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) said it was considering a full ban of corticosteroids, but Lappartient is keen to move ahead regardless of whether this actually comes about or not.
He suggests measures similar to those imposed by the Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC) anti-doping organisation, which imposes an eight-day no-start rule following the use of cortisone.
Lappartient told Sporza cycling’s current approach could be improved: “For example, by taking a rider out [of races] for the use of cortisone. Not for a positive doping case, but for the health of the rider himself.
“We can then impose a temporary start ban. For example, the rider is left out for 15 days and returns when everything is back in order. I would like to introduce that from the beginning of 2019.”
Data published by the Fancy Bears hacking group after the Rio Olympics revealed that Wiggins had been granted TUEs to take triamcinolone ahead of three key races – the 2011 and 2012 editions of the Tour de France and the 2013 Giro d’Italia.
While questions were raised about the timing of those TUEs – each of which was around a week before the race in question – they were granted in accordance with the rules and authorised by the UCI.
Team Sky chairman Graham McWilliam later revealed that the team had ordered 55 ampoules of the substance between 2010 and 2013 and UK Anti-Doping is currently investigating allegations of possible wrongdoing.