MPCC announces it now encompasses all Pro Continental teams

by Shane Stokes


The MPCC anti-doping movement has continued to gain strength and has announced that it now includes every Pro Continental squad in the peloton after the CCC Sprandi Polkowice squad was accepted as a new member.

The body, whose members voluntarily accept stricter anti-doping rules than others, now features 19 Pro Continental teams. It also includes 11 out of the current 17 World Tour teams, with Sky, BMC Racing Team, Trek Factory Racing, Etixx-QuickStep, Movistar and Tinkoff-Saxo the teams who have thus far not joined.

The membership also includes 32 Continental teams plus eight women’s squads.

However clarification is needed over the membership of the Southeast Pro Cycling team. It is listed on the MPCC website as one of the Pro Continental teams, but was actually suspended from the movement last December.

It was named the Neri Sottoli team then due to the identity of the 2014 title sponsor.

A statement by the MPCC on December 3 made that suspension clear.

“At the last MPCC general meeting, all of the team members have required further explanations from Neri Sottoli’s manager Angelo Citracca in order to confirm, or not, the membership of the team,” the MPCC said then.

“At the end of the interview with the Neri Sottoli team’s sporting director Serge Parsani, who was representing Anglo Citracca, the board of directors agreed unanimously to suspend the Neri Sottoli team with immediate effect until the General Assembly of October 2015.”

Racing as Vini Fantini-Selle Italia in 2013, the team had positive tests for EPO with Mauro Santambrogio and Danilo di Luca.

A third rider, Matteo Rabottini, was positive for the same substance in an out of competition test carried out on August 8.

The movement has a range of regulations which add to the WADA Code rules all teams must follow.

The additional regulations include periods of self-suspension for teams in the event of multiple positive tests within a certain time frame, the acceptance of cortisol tests plus a break from racing if these results are deemed irregular, plus a commitment not to employ riders for an additional two years after they return from a suspension of six months or more.

The latter rule is currently under scrutiny, however, as the Lampre-Merida team has said that it plans to retain Diego Ulissi when he returns from his current nine month suspension.

This led to an apparent public exchange between the MPCC and the team earlier this month. The former said that it wanted clarification from the team on the matter, while the latter was critical of that plus its reporting and claimed it was following the rules.

The confusion appears to be over the interpretation of that regulation and whether or not it is valid for riders who already have contracts in place with a team.

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