International Cycling Relations
64“Normally what we did in the past was be aware of the points of the ProTour. It wasn’t just being good in a few races, but in all races. We’ve always had an international calendar. We can’t just focus on the ProTour. We’ll go to the races that are best for the team, whether they’re in the ProTour or not.” Scott Sunderland, Sport Director, Team CSC
World governments discuss international issues through vast multinational organizations, such as the United Nations that set policy, enforce international law, and forecast development. This esteemed governing body must respect the sovereignty of nations in a principle of self-determination that expects individual countries to decide indigenous forms of government, economics, and civil order. However, the lines of authority blur at times about who is deciding what in cases of war or in foreign policy pressures. In theory, the UN is to respond to national invitation and not impose policy; in practice, the degree of authority over a nation’s sovereignty is in continuous debate reining in some UN powers and extending others. Such sovereignty exists somewhat in cycling where national federations and powerful race organizations determine policies and procedures in compliance with guidelines outlined by Cycling’s UN or UCI that is – Union Cyclist Internationale. This governing body is headquartered in 65Switzerland – interestingly, the land of international neutrality. The UCI’s mission and tasks are necessary, and its programs must be adaptable and respect the sovereignty of its key realms. In free trade, consumers decide. In cycling, “market demand” where teams select events, is a more complicated transaction involving the wishes of powerful race organizers at times at odds with the UCI. Doesn’t that just sound like negotiations occurring between sovereign nations and the UN? It proves we need both sides in tandem.
Prayer for Union Cycliste Internationale
“…for my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations.” 66Isaiah 56:7
We are thankful for the eagerness of the UCI to foster cycling’s future and the distinction of the Pro Tour. We confess acrimony and inability to see perspectives of diverse groups. We ask esprit d’corps for decision-makers to trade pace and set tempo without dropping the teams’ interests.
Calendars for Europe, Asia, Americas, Africa and Oceania are available at: www.uci.ch
Ponder What reforms are necessary for measured growth? Affirm I influence policy by defining what’s important to watch, race, and buy. Watch the big events as well as the new events at various levels.
65Centre Mondial du Cyclisme www.cmc-aigle.ch. World Cycling Center is located in Aigle, Switzerland and is headquarters to the UCI.
66The Bible, New International Version, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society