Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Do professional cyclists need a union?

There is a brief interview with Tyler Hamilton here.
One of the issues that arises near the end of the interview is whether or not cycling needs a union, similar to other professional sports. It seems to me that this would be a good idea, with some qualifications. I think it would be good so that the rights of cyclists are respected, and so power is more evenly distributed in this sport. However, given cycling's high profile links to doping scandals, I would want the union to strongly support strict standards on the model of Team Columbia and Garmin-Chipotle, not just in word, but in practice as well. The advantage of a union being in play is that this sort of thing could be done while trying to balance the rights and interests of individual cyclists as much as possible, and hopefully encouraging a grassroots level response to doping rather than the top-down model of organizations like WADA.

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