London, April 20, 2017 (AFP) – British Cycling will conduct a wide-ranging review of its medical practices after being criticised by UK Anti-Doping’s recent investigation. Britain’s cycling governing body and Team Sky were both heavily criticized for sloppy record-keeping following the probe into the contents of a package delivered to Team Sky in France at the end of the 2011 Criterium du Dauphine race.
Neither the team nor British Cycling were able to provide documentary
evidence of the package’s contents, and earlier this year UKAD chief Nicole Sapstead told MPs the governing body had no idea if the drugs in its medical store were intended for its riders or Team Sky’s. British Cycling has now asked the English Institute for Sport’s director of
medical services, Dr Rod Jaques, to conduct an independent review of its medical and physiotherapy teams’ operational practice. His report is expected in June and British Cycling’s people director Michael Chivers said: “We are committed to providing the highest standards of medical support. “That’s why we’ve commissioned an external expert to scrutinize our existing processes and procedures and to make a series of recommendations on how we can improve. “We will not pre-judge what the recommendations might be, but we are keen to bring parity between performance and health and welfare, and to ensure we reduce the potential for conflicts of interest between a team’s medical staff and its coaches.
“UK Anti-Doping has been investigating allegations of wrong-doing affecting both British Cycling and Team Sky. Winners of four of the last five Tours de France, Team Sky have been under scrutiny since October when it was revealed UKAD was looking into a claim former star rider Bradley Wiggins was injected with triamcinolone at the end of the Criterium du Dauphine in 2011. It emerged last September that Wiggins was given permission for jabs of the otherwise-banned drug before his three biggest races in 2011, 2012 and 2013, including his breakthrough Tour de France win in 2012. The now-retired Wiggins has denied any wrongdoing.
Central to the investigation has been the contents of a package delivered to the team at the end of that race, hand-delivered by a British Cycling coach and sent from the National Cycling Centre in Manchester. Dr Richard Freeman, the former Team Sky medic, has said he cannot find any records to prove the package contained the legal decongestant called Fluimucil because he failed to follow team policy by sharing those records with colleagues.
UK Anti-Doping is yet to publish the findings of its investigation, while
the results of a concurrent probe by the Culture, Media and Sport select committee will now not appear until after the upcoming general election.