Observers of sports on the Olympic program have noted for decades how the International Federations and National Olympic Committees adopt the IOC’s procedures for their own purposes, and in their own countries. Cycling is just the latest with the publication of its “Agenda 2022.”
Yes, it has that familiar “Agenda 2020″ ring to it, made famous by IOC chief Thomas Bach (GER) and his 2014 roadmap for the IOC’s future. For the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and its president, David Lappartient (FRA), the 74-page plan includes some noteworthy numbers and plans for change:
● There are now nine cycling disciplines: Road cycling, Track cycling, Mountain Bike, BMX Racing, BMX Freestyle, Para-cycling, Cyclo-cross, Trials and Indoor cycling. The UCI has 194 national federations, 1,037,424 registered riders (79.4% in Europe, and 82.0% men!), with 55.7% of all organized events being road races. The federation has an annual budget of 34.8 million Euro (~ $39.8 million U.S.).
● One of the newest developments in cycling is the “electric bike” or “e-bike.” The UCI wants to add it, either in road cycling or Mountain Bike, to the 2024 Olympic program. A World Championships in planned, perhaps as early as 2019. Reax: Is this really a good idea? No.
● The UCI World Road Championships are a big deal and a major revenue source. So the new idea is to put on a mega-Worlds once every four years – in the year before the Olympic Games – that includes all five Olympic disciplines (and e-bike!) in a single, massive event, which would also be an Olympic qualifier. Reax: Yes, this might work.
● Kill the Time Trials in the World Road Champs and replace them with a mixed-gender event (just what the IOC loves). Reax: Nooooo!
● Try to get UCI World Tour events to hold a women’s event as well and to make “UCI Women’s teams financially viable.” Reax: Worthy, but hard.
There’s a lot more, and the program is ambitious, and while there are pages full of goals, not much is said about how to get there. Bonne chance!