The Truth and Complication Commission

The new UCI President Brian Cookson made a number of campaign promises as part of his election manifesto. One of these was the establishment of some sort of process to determine the truth about the doping problem within the sport, primarily so that a figurative line could be drawn demarcating the ushering in of a new era.

Presumably this would result in a deluge of doping related scandal with no repercussions for those participating. After this process, punishments for doping offenders would be more severe and the drip feeding of doping stories which has been occurring since the Festina affair rocked cycling in 1998 would be at an end.

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Juan Jos̩ Cobo РA shadow of a man

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Whenever a rider wins the Tour de France, after the initial fanfare has abated, the celebrations have fizzled out and the winter starts to bite, the successful cyclist will begin to plan out his training regime and start working towards next year’s goal – winning the Tour de France again.

The same is not true of cycling’s other two Grand Tours, the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a Espana. In recent years, the cream of the crop of G.C. riders tend to steer clear of the Giro as received wisdom suggests it does not provide the preparation required to tackle the Tour de France a month later. Consequently, the Giro is contested largely by riders who are not their team’s best G.C. rider along with the usual smattering of Italian favourites seeking glory on home soil.

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The search for a home victory

One thing about the recent Tour Down Under which is apparent when reviewing the results is just how Australian they all are. Cameron Meyer won the overall prize and a stage, Matthew Goss finished runner up overall, took the points classification and won two stages (if you count the warmup crit race), Michael Matthews won a stage and finished 4th overall and finally, Luke Roberts won the mountains classification. In the races history, Australians have won overall more often than not, winning seven of the 13 editions. Even after the race was granted Pro Tour status (now World Tour status), and the peloton swelled with far more quality international riders, Australians have won two of the four editions overall, as well as taking 12 stage victories via nine different riders.

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