UCI president Hein Verbruggen has attacked "former friend" Dick Pound, president of the World Anti-Doping Agency, over WADA's 'vendetta' against cycling.

Verbruggen lays into Pound and WADA’s ‘war machine’

Procycling editor Jeremy Whittle, covering the world track champs in Los Angeles for The Times, spoke with an incandescent Verbruggen at the championships.

The UCI chief was furious when Pound said that WADA-run controls in cycling would probably be turned down by the UCI.

“That’s a plain lie. I offered years ago to give WADA the money to do all the controls in cycling. They didn’t want to. So it’s a plain lie by Dick Pound.

"Anyway, they don’t have the staff, or the equipment – they don’t have anything.

“I don’t care about Mr Pound because he is not objective.

“I don’t want to see him any more. He was a good friend of mine but he’s not now. WADA should be on the federation’s side but many federations have a problem with him.

“But we can’t solve the problem of doping without working with governments and that’s what WADA does.”

Verbruggen said that that Pound had done a “good job” at WADA, but that he was building a “war machine”:

“Yes, WADA should criticise a federation when they’re not working well, but they are neither impartial nor objective,” said Verbruggen.

"Pound is the sheriff who shoots everything that moves. WADA should be above all that and he should establish proof before he speaks.

“We will still work with WADA, but not with Pound, because he is not impartial. Athletes have the right to defend themselves even if it’s with the cheapest excuse. You only punish when it’s proven – that’s when you hit them.”


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