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Swiss reverse support for world cycling chief

International Cycling Union (UCI) president Pat McQuaid received a blow on Wednesday to his bid to win a third term in the role as the Swiss Cycling Federation withdrew its backing for his candidacy.

Swiss reverse support for world cycling chief
Patrick McQuaid. Photo: Pierre Andrieu/AFP

Irishman McQuaid had already seen his homeland remove their support for him but then thought he been granted a reprieve when the Swiss stepped in.
   
But now he has lost their backing as well, he is left needing to change the rules in order to stand for election.
   
"The Board of Directors of Swiss Cycling have reversed their decision from May 13th 2013 concerning the nomination of Pat McQuaid and decided yesterday (Tuesday) to withdraw the nomination of Pat McQuaid for reelection to the UCI presidency," said the Swiss federation in a statement.
   
"By consequence the arbitration requested by three members of Swiss Cycling has been cancelled as it is no longer of any use."
   
Three members of the board had previously contested Swiss Cycling's decision to support the Irishman.
   
McQuaid has been severely criticised over his links to now-disgraced former cycling star Lance Armstrong.
   
McQuaid was suspected of complicity in helping Armstrong, who has been stripped of his seven Tour de France victories, cover up positive doping tests.
   
The 63-year-old has previously accused his detractors of mounting a "smear campaign" against him.
   
"I do think there is a certain movement out there against me, which doesn't want me to be the president of the UCI for their own political reasons, or for their own personal reasons," he told AFP earlier this month.
   
He is due to stand against longtime British Cycling president Brian Cookson in the election in Florence on September 27th.
   
But in order to do so he needs to secure a modification to the UCI statutes as under current legislation he is ineligible.
   
The Malaysian Federation has proposed an amendment that would allow a presidential candidate to be supported by two member Federations rather than his own affiliated federation.
   
If that is successful, McQuaid would be able to stand for election as he has the support of the Thai and Moroccan federations.
   
The reason he had managed to stay in the race through Swiss support was that although he is Irish, he lives in Switzerland, where the UCI is based in Aigle, a town in the canton of Vaud.

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CYCLING

VIDEO: Why you may struggle to buy a bike in Europe in 2021

Demand for bicycles has soared in Europe during the coronavirus pandemic, but conversely the global supply is at record low levels, with consumers having to wait months or over a year for their bike of choice.

VIDEO: Why you may struggle to buy a bike in Europe in 2021
Photo: Stocksnap/Pixabay

Bikes are projected to outsell cars in Europe by two to one by 2030.   

But 2021 will not be an easy year to buy a bike in many European countries, especially if you have a particular model in mind. 

Firstly, there's been a huge surge in demand for bikes during the pandemic, as Europeans looked for ways to stay fit and move around more freely without having to worry about being exposed to Covid-19 on public transport.

On the flip side, bike production in China, which supplies almost the entire global market, has practically ground to a halt.

The same can be said for bicycle accessories and components, which are either not being produced in Chinese factories currently or held up for months in ports in Asia due to the reduction of capacity in shipping.

 

In this short report, video producer Alex Dunham explores the issue of Europe's bike shortage in 2021.

 

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