2.15.120 A transfer period extends from 1 August to 20 October
According to the UCI rules, rider transfers should only be announced during the 80 day window from 1 August onwards. In addition, actual recruitment, such as the signing of contracts is also meant to take place during the same period.
A team or rider can be fined if announcements are made outside of this period. For example if a rider announced midway through the Tour de France that they are leaving their team, this could be seen as unfavourable publicity towards the rider’s current team and accordingly the rider can be fined.
All in all the “transfer season” livens up a dull period of the season and throws up surprises, like Sastre’s move to Geox. The rule on timing seems appropriate, what is missing is the framework to deal with transfer fees, as seen when Bradley Wiggins moved from Garmin to Team Sky.