Thursday 29 September 2016

Chris Froome: Cycling has given other sports a template to help in the fight against doping

Tom Rooney

Published 03/11/2015 | 15:24

Chris Froome, Cyclist, Team Sky, on the Centre Stage during Day 1 of the 2015 Web Summit in the RDS, Dublin, Ireland. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE / Web Summit
Chris Froome, Cyclist, Team Sky, on the Centre Stage during Day 1 of the 2015 Web Summit in the RDS, Dublin, Ireland. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE / Web Summit

Tour de France winner Chris Froome believes the doping problems which plagued cycling in recent times have been greatly diminished thanks to the increased vigilance of those policing the sport.

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Cycling was sent into a tailspin of negativity in 2012, when the United States Anti-Doping Agency revealed that Lance Armstrong and many other elite cyclists had been engaged in the long-term use of performance enhancing drugs.

The sport has been struggling to redeem its reputation since, but Team Sky’s Froome, who won this year’s Tour de France and the 2013 edition, says that the issue has been addressed rigorously by the relevant bodies and that cycling is now at the vanguard of doping prevention.

“The anti-doping movement has been a massive part of the sport’s evolution over the last 10 years, especially moving on from the Lance Armstrong era, he said. “We all know what was happening back then.

“I think the anti-doping agencies have really stepped up their game and put a lot of new testing procedures in place. I really do think the sport has led the way for any number amount of sports to adapt.”

Speaking at the Web Summit in the RDS, the 30-year-old said that tenacity of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) in tandem with the development of the biological passport have made it near impossible for would-be cheats to go unnoticed.

“The World Anti-Doping Agency have a set of rules and the introduction of the biological passport in 2009 has helped clean up the sport in a huge way.

“On top of that, the UCI, the governing board of cycling, have come in and introduced even more measures.

“We are the only sport to have 24 hour testing; they can come and wake us up at 2 o’clock in the morning, 365 days of the year. They’ve gone above and beyond to try and get rid of doping in the sport,” he said.

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