GENEVA (Reuters) – The International Cycling Union (UCI) will use X-ray technology and randomly select bikes to dismantle following a race in an increased effort to fight technological fraud, the governing body said on Wednesday.
UCI president David Lappartient, who won a landslide election victory over Brian Cookson last September, had promised the detection of potential mini-engines in bikes would be one of his top priorities.
The Frenchman announced a series of new measures in Geneva on Wednesday, including the use of X-ray equipped trucks, as revealed by Reuters on Tuesday.
Other measures include the dismantling of suspicious bikes and the continued use of tablet devices to scan bikes, a technique that was widely criticized by riders and some team staff for being ineffective.
In the last two editions of the Tour de France, thermal imaging cameras were also used to detect the potential use of motors in bikes.
Riders caught using mini-engines face a minimum six-month suspension as well as a fine up to 200,000 Swiss Francs($210,000), while the team could face a fine of up to 1 million Swiss Francs.
($1 = 0.9536 Swiss francs)
(Writing by Julien Pretot, editing by Pritha Sarkar)