Call for UCI chief to act on Lance Armstrong doping affair after Nike drops him

File photograph of Lance Armstrong.
reuters

International Cycling Union chief Pat McQuaid must immediately make clear the governing body’s position on the Lance Armstrong doping affair or resign to prevent the collapse of world cycling, a commercial partner of the sport said on Thursday.

Australian Jaimie Fuller, whose SKINS company is a partner of the elite Rabobank team and Cycling Australia among others, has written an open letter to McQuaid warning of catastrophic consequences of the body’s “inertia”.

The UCI has yet to rule on the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency’s report into Armstrong, which alleges that the now retired seven-times Tour de France champion achieved his success on the back of a highly sophisticated doping scheme.

“I’m just devastated and horrified by what has happened,” Fuller told Reuters by telephone on Thursday.

“The initial response of the UCI to USADA was defensive and questioning not cooperative and the longer the subsequent silence goes on it’s getting much worse for the sport of cycling.

“I’m an optimist and I would desperately hope that common sense would see the light of day.

“(But) if Mr McQuaid and his cohorts are not prepared to say what they are going to do about this systemic issue, to rip the scabs off of what has happened, there is no question they should resign.”

The UCI, who can either confirm Armstrong’s life ban and strip him of his seven Tour titles or take the matter to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, have until October31 to rule on the case.

FESTINA AFFAIR

Sportswear manufacturer Nike Inc and beer maker Anheuser-Busch have both decided to terminate their relationships with Armstrong in the wake of the report.

Fuller warned the commercial impact would go beyond the American and could dwarf the damage the sport suffered in the wake of the Festina team doping scandal of 1998.

“It happened at the end of the 90s with the Festina affair, to the point where German television refused to show the Tour de France,” Fuller said.

“There’s no question that there was a commercial hit that happened to the sport of cycling. I genuinely believe that what we’re seeing now is way worse.

“When Armstrong was winning, when he was doing unbelievable things, the glow he cast across the whole sport was fabulous. Now, we’re going to see the exact reverse.”

Fuller said SKINS, which produces therapeutic compression clothing for athletes, would have to reconsider its association with cycling if the UCI failed to act.

“I’m really most concerned with the impact on the popularity of cycling,” he said.

“That has both an emotional impact on those who love the sport as well as a commercial impact on we businesses who are involved in the sport.

“Our whole brand is built on the philosophy of integrity in sport. We enable relationship with lead athletes around the world on those grounds and we also enter into relationships with consumers with those beliefs.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

U.S. Soccer

Orlando City takes shot at NYCFC over Frank…

Orlando City reminded the world how big a signing Brazilian star Kaka earlier this month with a photo of Kaka mobbed by fans juxtaposed against Lampard.

NBA

Jeremy Lin says 'Linsanity' is over as he…

Jeremy Lin lit up the NBA two years ago with his play for the Knicks but he has no desire to recreate "Linsanity" in his new career with the Lakers.

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.