Monthly Archives: October 2018

Laura Kenny wins omnium gold at track World Cup in Canada

Laura Kenny celebrates winning gold

Laura Kenny won omnium gold at both the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games

Britain’s Laura Kenny won her second gold medal of the UCI Track World Cup in Milton, Canada, with victory in the women’s omnium.

The 26-year-old, a two-time omnium Olympic champion, also won team pursuit gold on Friday in what was her first World Cup event since January 2016.

Mexico’s Lizbeth Salazar finished second with Jennifer Valente of the United States in third.

Fellow Britons Ollie Wood and Mark Stewart combined to win madison silver.

The duo won the final sprint to finish second behind Denmark’s Casper Von Folsach and Julius Johansen.

Four-time Olympic champion Kenny returned to cycling in March having given birth to her first child in August 2017.

“To say I was nervous would have been an understatement. My first World Cup in the new format,” Kenny said on Instagram.

“It took me a couple of events to find my feet and to get used to racing at this level again but once I did I felt more and more like my old self and by the points race I started to really enjoy it.”

Britain won eight medals at the World Cup in Milton, having picked up six medals in the opening World Cup event in France last weekend.

The six-stage series offers the chance to win Olympic qualifying points, with round four taking place in London in December.

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Wada: Anti-doping agencies call for urgent reform after Russia reinstatement

World Anti-Doping Agency president Sir Craig Reedie

Wada president Sir Craig Reedie will step down next year at the end of his second term

The World Anti-Doping Agency needs urgent reform following its reinstatement of Russia, says a group of leading national anti-doping bodies.

In September Wada lifted a three-year ban on Russia’s anti-doping agency (Rusada) that had been imposed for state-sponsored doping.

Many athletes opposed lifting the ban.

The leaders of 18 anti-doping agencies, including UK Anti-Doping chief executive Nicole Sapstead, held an emergency summit in Paris on Monday.

“Wada will rise once again, but only if it starts to listen to global athlete community concerns,” said the group in a statement.

They added that they stood “shoulder to shoulder” with athletes and would work alongside them to “strive to transform Wada” and ensure it “makes decisions in the interests of clean sport”.

Wada president Sir Craig Reedie said Russia’s reinstatement was “subject to strict conditions” and that the anti-doping authority must be given access to former Moscow laboratory data and samples.

The group reiterated their opposition to Russia’s reinstatement and called on Wada to “run an open, transparent and clear process” in securing the anti-doping samples from the Moscow laboratory by the 31 December deadline.

A Wada governance group last week made several recommendations for reform, including a move to an independent president and vice-president with no links to the sports movement or governments.

However, the 18 national anti-doping bodies said: “Wada’s limited proposals for governance reform fall far short of what the world’s athletes and other champions of clean sport have been calling for these past two years, and there should be a rethink.”

The group endorsed a series of reforms it put forward in 2016 following the McLaren report into Russian state-sponsored doping, and also those proposed by British Paralympic medallist Ali Jawad, which include overhauling Wada’s 15-person executive committee.

The anti-doping leaders also called for Wada to commission a “full and thorough independent investigation” into allegations of bullying within the organisation.

It follows claims by Wada Athlete Committee chair Beckie Scott made to BBC Sport that some of the organisation’s most senior officials tried to “bully” her over her opposition to Russia’s reinstatement.

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Katie Archibald & Elinor Barker win more gold at UCI Track World Cup

Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald

Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald were part of Britain’s gold medal-winning quartet at the 2016 Rio Olympics

Britain’s Katie Archibald and Elinor Barker claimed further gold medals on day two of the UCI Track World Cup in Milton, Canada.

After team pursuit gold alongside Laura Kenny and Ellie Dickinson, Archibald and Barker joined up for the Madison, set for an Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020.

The British pair recorded 36 points, 17 clear of second-placed Denmark.

Olympic champion Jason Kenny sealed his first gold of the World Cup season with success in the keirin.

Archibald and Barker won 10 points in the final sprint but the race was secure long before then, with only silver medallists Amalie Dideriksen and Julie Leth scoring more than half the British team’s total.

More than a decade after his first World Cup gold, 30-year-old Kenny added to his collection after a thrilling final race.

After finishing third in his heat, he crossed the line in 10.335 seconds, 0.042 seconds ahead of Canada’s Hugo Barrette, with Matthijs Buchli third.

Mark Stewart, second in the individual points race medal in France last week, captured another silver, this time in the omnium.

In France last week, Britain won six medals at the opening round of the six-stage Track World Cup series, which includes qualification points for the Tokyo Games.

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Chris Froome: Wada president Sir Craig Reedie rejects case criticism

Chris Froome in action during the 2018 Giro d'Italia

Chris Froome won this year’s Giro d’Italia despite the salbutamol case hanging over him

World Anti-Doping Association president Sir Craig Reedie has rejected criticism of how Chris Froome’s asthma drug case was handled and will not resign.

The Movement for Credible Cycling said Reedie should quit, calling Froome’s case – dropped in July – “devastating” for the sport’s credibility.

It also questioned Wada’s independence, and its approach to Russia’s anti-doping body and painkiller tramadol.

But Reedie said Wada was “stronger and more effective than it has ever been”.

In a letter seen by BBC Sport, the 77-year-old Briton said he would see out his second term until the end of 2019, adding: “In everything we do, Wada is keeping the athletes to the fore.”

British four-time Tour de France champion Froome was under investigation after more than the allowed level of legal drug salbutamol was found in his urine.

Wada accepted there was no breach and cycling’s world governing body, the UCI, dropped on the case on 2 July after nine months.

The MPCC – which represents seven of the 18 World Tour teams, 23 professional continental outfits, nine continental teams, six UCI women teams and 264 riders – said that following Froome’s case it “laments the way sanctions are not applied equally and procedures are not followed equally, which is devastating for the credibility of the sport”.

Reedie replied: “Wada remains convinced that the UCI reached the correct and fair outcome in what was a very complex case.”

He added that the MPCC had “over-simplified” the case “without having knowledge of the voluminous file of the case and both the scientific and legal challenges it raised”.


Reedie said that there were recommendations to improve Wada’s independence

Why isn’t tramadol banned?

The MPCC also asked why the painkilling drug tramadol had not been placed on Wada’s banned list, despite being detected in 4.4% of samples taken in cycling last year.

It said its use in cycling was “higher than any other endurance sport” and continuing to allow its use “could endanger the health of our athletes”.

But Reedie responded by saying it was “a useful therapeutic agent” and “there is not currently any consensus among Wada’s prohibited list expert group – composed of experts who are independent from Wada – that tramadol meets the criteria for inclusion on the list and so it remains non-prohibited”.

But he added that the group “will continue to evaluate this medication” and was “supportive of the UCI’s initiative to control the use of tramadol in cycling, primarily for health reasons”.

Questions over Rusada and Wada independence

In September, Wada lifted a three-year suspension of Russia’s anti-doping agency (Rusada) following a major scandal over alleged state-sponsored doping.

The MPCC also said that Rusada’s reinstatement was dependent on two conditions, which it said “had not been met”: the acceptance of the conclusions of the McLaren Report on the reality of institutional doping, and granting access to Moscow’s anti-doping laboratories.

But Reedie said: “Wada respects that everyone is entitled to voice their opinion, but we remain firmly of the view that it was the right decision for clean sport and that Wada is in a stronger position because of it.

“Wada’s focus now is on finalising the process for accessing all the data from the Moscow laboratory, which is the missing piece of the puzzle, by the end of the year, allowing us to catch more cheats and exonerate clean athletes.”

The Scot also said criticism of the Operation Puerto case – which revealed a doping network involving some of the world’s top cyclists in 2006 – “demonstrates an astonishing lack of knowledge and understanding of what has happened to date”.

And in response to questions about Wada’s independence, he said he had always acted independently and there was an ongoing review which would consider new recommendations, such as more independent members on the executive committee and that “the positions of president and vice-president should also be independent”.

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Archibald aims to cement Madison spot as she targets three Olympic golds

Katie Archibald and Laura Kenny compete in the Madison at the European Championships in Glasgow

Katie Archibald and Laura Kenny finished a disappointing fourth n the Madison at the European Championships

Katie Archibald hopes to cement her place in Great Britain’s Madison team with strong performances at forthcoming Track World Cup meetings.

The Scot will also use the event to help assess whether she can contend for Olympic gold on three fronts.

Archibald, 24, also aims to compete for medals in Tokyo in the team pursuit and omnium as well as the Madison.

“If you’re a competitive cyclist, you should want to go to the Olympics and do everything,” she said.

“I really want to believe I can be there for the team pursuit, at the moment I’m aspiring to be there for the Madison, and so the question is can you put the omnium on top of that – can anyone?

“At the moment, my big aim is trying to solidify that Madison spot.”

Archibald won Madison gold in the World Championships earlier this year in tandem with Emily Nelson, and won the British Championships in partnership with Elinor Barker.

But she and Laura Kenny could only manage fourth place in the European Championships in Glasgow in August.

Archibald, Kenny, Elinor Barker and Ellie Dickinson are all in the women’s endurance squad for the second World Cup event starting in Milton, Canada, on Friday, 26 October.

The third in the series is scheduled for Berlin, starting on 30 November, before the Track World Cup series comes to London’s Lee Valley VeloPark from 14 to 16 December.

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