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Meta-Issue Intrigue Update

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Yeah, you all want to talk about racing, but Friday is a somewhat big day in Cycling's cloakrooms as well, as the UCI is expected to roll out its Secret Anti-Doping Plan. Now, you can tell from my tone how much trust I have in the UCI these days, but tomorrow is another day, and maybe the UCI will prove to have some real contributions to make here. My guess is that the big plan will call for saturation-level testing, and Pat McQuaid will give a press conference about how much money the UCI is committed to spending. But who knows, perhaps there will be more vision attached to whatever they roll out. In any event, the UCI has a role to play in the solution, and anything is better than nothing.

[How's that for soft bigotry?]

Meanwhile, CN reports that the dark clouds hanging over the sport aren't going away just because of Monday's agreement.  We've flogged to death the first two points (Unibet vs. French gambling; 18 vs. 20 teams), but the third major dealbreaker could be the battle for television revenue. The nub is that the race organizers have always owned this revenue, but the Pro Tour is apparently claiming that their teams bring a brand, and that brand is what's being televised. Or some such thing. So they want to start their own network? Don't quiz me on the arguments, but the Pro Tour is angling for some of that revenue, and aren't likely to be well received.

The next winter or two will be more of the same as the last. Hopefully without the season hanging in the balance, but I wouldn't count on that.