To be clear, radio ban protests are not only about the radio ban. Teams and riders must have greater participation in governance of cycling…
…Our licensing fees and bio-pass contributions to the UCI are massive. We must be represented.”No taxation w/o representation.” Patrick Henry
Note Vaughters is not just the owner and manager of one of the biggest teams, he is also the president of the teams’ association the AIGCP. It’s what I’ve been saying before: this is not a safety debate about radios, it is about the teams flexing some muscle in order to shape the rules. The subject of radio use is being used as a wedge to prise open the UCI.
As far as I’m concerned this is all good. But if teams expect consultation on the creation and implementation of new rules, this has to hold true for others as well. It’s good to consult the AIGCP but the UCI needs a better forum to discuss changes with the riders as well. Not to mention race organisers and perhaps even fans and the media, especially TV broadcasters as they essentially fund the sport. If the teams want a say, it’s reasonable to consult others too.
Bosses vs workers
The AIGCP is an organisation that works for the teams, it is a business lobby created to serve their needs; an organisation that works for employers is not always helpful for employees. Riders need their own version of a trade union as their needs and views do not always coincide with the teams.
Save the UCI
Finally, it’s a subject I’ll return to soon but the UCI needs defending. It’s open season right now on the UCI, almost everyone is pointing out their mistakes. But a good governing body is essential for the sport. As much as the AIGCP has a point about arbitrary rules being introduced overnight, we need be wary of their agenda too. Teams have vested interests and these do not always run alongside those of riders nor fans. A neutral and effective governing body should be the custodian of the sport.