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UCI Announces New Measures to Improve Rider Safety and Security

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The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) announced today, that it will organize a Security and Technical Regulations working group meeting to review and improve rider safety and security for the next season. Riders, teams, race organisers and Commissaires have been invited by the UCI Road Commission to meet on September 30, 2016, in Milan (Italy), at the last UCI WorldTour event of the season, Il Lombardia.

Riders will be represented by the Cyclistes Professionnels Associés (CPA), teams by the Association Internationale des Groupes Cyclistes Professionnels (AIGCP) and organisers by the Association Internationale des Organisateurs de Courses Cyclistes (AIOCC).

The working group will review the progress made in 2016, and focus on further changes for 2017.

Earlier in 2016, the UCI introduced new tougher regulations governing the conduct of anyone in control of a car or motorcycle in a road race to improve the safety of riders, spectators and other vehicles.

The new rules make it clear that drivers and motorcycle riders must at all times comply with directions issued by race Commissaires, with additional emphasis placed on the need for safe driving, particularly when overtaking riders.
Any driver found to be breaking the rules or acting negligently is subject to sanctions applied by the UCI Disciplinary Commission. Since the new rules were introduced, several cases of misconduct by motorcycle riders have been passed on to the UCI Disciplinary Commission.

In addition, the UCI introduced new regulations to clarify exactly when riders are expected to stop at level crossings, which is as soon as warning signals are activated. These regulations were strictly enforced in 2016 and riders were disqualified for breaches.

The introduction of the Extreme Weather Protocol at the start of the year was also a major step forward in ensuring riders’ safety. It was enacted on three occasions, bringing together representatives of riders and teams to decide on the appropriate actions to take.

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Over the course of the season, the UCI has also recruited several experienced Technical Advisors who are deployed at races on an ongoing basis to assess their progress in improving security.

In addition, the following specific measures have been taken for the 2016 UCI Road World Championships in Doha, Qatar:

  • Road works to remove and adapt traffic islands to improve the racing line of the final 1.5 kilometres of the circuit;
  • The position of barriers will be appropriately adapted to take into account the width of the road in certain sections;
  • The caravan will feature smaller, lighter trail-type motorbikes without panniers;
  • All vehicles will be driven by people with significant previous experience of driving at races.

On-time for the beginning of the 2017 season, the UCI will publish a Race Caravan guide. This comprehensive set of regulations and guidelines will govern all aspects of the safety and security of road races and will include rules defining the allocation and position of vehicles within a race.

The Security and Technical Regulations working group which will meet on September the 30th will discuss various topics including the maximum number of riders in the race, safe course design, in particular within the final three kilometres of a race, a set of best practice guidelines for race finishes adapted to different course conditions, including reconnoitre and hazard identification, protection from obstacles and the finish. These were elements brought to the discussions by the CPA during the last UCI Road Commission meeting.

UCI President Brian Cookson said: “I am happy with the progress and investment we have made in 2016. We know that there is more work to do and I am looking forward to working with the AIGCP, the CPA, AIOCC and others to ensure that we create the best possible conditions for riders”.

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