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by Shane Stokes
November 10, 2017
Whelan leading Tour of Tasmania; Tour of Hainan aggressor handed lengthy ban by Chinese federation, team also suspended; Movistar chief Unzué calls for substitutions in Grand Tours; Orica-Scott confident in finalised 2018 line-up; Unsponsored British quartet take on world’s best in track World Cups; Women charged over hit and run which left 13 year old fighting for life; Video: Sagan chases bike ‘thief’; Video: Lotto-Soudal presents 2018 team jersey; Video: Ex-engineer leaks how marketing works in the bike industry
Road racing has long been based on the concept of riders battling the odds to make it through Grand Tours and other races but Movistar team boss Eusebio Unzué has called for a rethink. The Spaniard wants cycling to adopt a substitution system, like cycling and some other sports.
The Movistar team kit for 2018
“It’s about fighting in the same conditions,” he said, according to Ciclo21. “Cycling should give symptoms of humanity. As there are no options to replace anyone, we have the kids destroyed, doing stages of 200 km in very bad conditions.
“If there is no option to change [riders], at least you could consider the possibility of studying with the doctors to have it two days of recovery or when the doctor considers it. But that’s how it is. I would like to be able to replace the riders who have fallen in the first week, to have three riders prepared to replace the injured, as happens in any other sport.”
Should such a system be introduced, it seems open to abuse: who would determine that a rider was sufficiently unwell to be able to be replaced by another, for example? However Unzué proposes another measure which seems to have a better chance of being allowed by the UCI: setting a cap on how big team budgets could be.
“The limitation of budgets would have its logic,” he said, likely thinking about Team Sky. “It would seem to me better if the salaries of the runners were more balanced. Those of us who do not have the unlimited budgets have to fight for the roosters [leaders] that are in the market. To throw all the energy into that, and spread misery among the other runners. That’s unfair.”
Click through to read more at Ciclo21.