What a (Gila) Crock

Leipheimer and Nydam - (c) Ken Conley

Where Lance goes, the rulebooks and stupidity follow...

First, Astana and BMC are caught up in the UCI's sudden desire to enforce a rule that says that ProTour teams cannot race in national events. If there was an epidemic of ProTour teams deciding that they would rather rack up wins at local races than, say, the Tour de France, I would understand, but with events like Philly and Tour of New York facing cancellation, the US Open, Lehigh, Reading, Tour de Leenau, Oregon Pro, and Priority Health Classic cancelled, and the Tour of Gila itself saved from extinction by SRAM, do we really need to be kicking race promoters in the gut by telling them that Lance Armstrong can't race in their event? I mean, Lance is like a Magical Money Unicorn -- you gotta spread that around!

There's a reason why that rule isn't generally enforced: it's bad for cycling! SRAM steps into save a race and the biggest team they sponsor can't race it? Stupid!

Now, of course, the UCI has 'compromised' and will allow three Astana riders to race (Lance, Levi, and Horner), without their Astana kits. This isn't too big a deal for Astana, but poor BMC now has to send five riders home and follow the same rule interpretation. We'll have to see if the UCI will now follow BMC around for the rest of the season and wreck havoc on their ability to race.

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Comments (4)


I think that there is a lot more to this story than we know so far. Something or someone got the UCI to enforce the rule at the race. Who was it and why are the questions here for me.

Was it a domestic team that couldn't get on the startlist because it was full (but somehow the Astana trio got in anyway)? Was it a rider that felt the he couldn't get any of the prize money? Heck (continuing with conspiracies) was it another race organizer?


My conspiracy theory goes with the anti-Armstrong contingent.

Not necessarily "anti Armstrong" but Astana is a high profile team with lots of people watching, so UCI had to pay attention to them.

But yeah, this really stinks for BMC.

...but anyway I'm sure it was a treat for the locals to see Stewart Jackson come home and direct his frustration into win for him last weekend.

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