UCI PRESIDENT BRIAN COOKSON HAILS 2017 TOUR DE FRANCE AS ‘ONE OF THE MOST EXCITING EVER’ AFTER PARIS FINALE

Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) President Brian Cookson believes the 2017 Tour De France will go down in history as one of the most exciting ever after Team Sky’s Chris Froome won the event for the fourth time.

Cookson was particularly impressed by the Tour’s organisation, and that enhanced security ensured rider and spectator safety, while the competitive spirit shown by so many teams made the event such a spectacle.

UCI President Brian Cookson said: “I’d like to congratulate everyone involved in this year’s Tour De France for making it one of the closest and most exciting ever editions of this fantastic event.

“The racing was close pretty much every day and it was fantastic to see the diversity of teams and riders of different nationalities putting in such outstanding performances.

“I’d also like to congratulate the organisers, ASO, on the Tour’s excellent organisation and great route planning, and the host towns and cities for their support, with crowds showing their enthusiasm in the spirit of elite sport. That all helped to deliver an event that surpassed expectations.”

Cookson is clear that the UCI’s focus on technological fraud and its collaborative work with anti-doping agencies has proved to have been a success.

He added: “The UCI takes technological fraud very seriously and we have been working hard to stay ahead of those who may seek to gain an unfair advantage. Technological fraud checks have been completed every day by the UCI in coordination with the race organiser, French authorities and French law enforcement.

“On anti-doping, our work via the independent Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation with WADA and the French agency, AFLD, has also given us a greater confidence that we are winning the fight against cheating. We continue to test widely in all our disciplines to ensure that anyone tempted to cheat in this way knows they will be caught.”

Under Cookson, the UCI has also made huge steps to promote gender equality in cycling and he hopes the involvement of women in a mountain stage of this year’s Tour is another step forward in greater participation.

He concluded: “We’ve seen once again this month that women can indeed race on the big mountains. I will be discussing with ASO the potential for extending women's involvement in the Tour so that we can maximise the benefits for the women’s calendar that we have already begun with the introduction of the UCI Women’s WorldTour.”

Cookson, who became President of the world governing body for the sport of cycling in 2013, is standing for a second term to build on the significant progress that has been made during the first four years of his Presidency.

He aims to drive growth across all of cycling’s disciplines, accelerate international development, champion cycling for transport and leisure, ensure there is equal opportunity for men and women to participate and compete, build on cycling’s restored credibility and ensure the UCI continues to drive excellence in its operations.