The motion by the Organisational Committee of the World Championships 2006 to cut the number of rounds for the professional race at the domestic WC in Salzburg has been declined by UCI. The Road Commission announced this decision through Philippe Chevallier who is responsible for rules. The professional race at the World Championship will therefore take place on 24th September not over ten but over twelve rounds and thus 265.2 kilometers.
"Cycling World Championships are a classic" On some items Philippe Chevallier provides reasons for the decision of the World Cycling Federation UCI. By way of an introduction the Frenchman writes: "Cycling World Championships are one of the biggest events on the international sport calendar. Just like the traditional classics Milan-San Remo, the Flanders Tour, Paris-Roubaix, Lüttich-Bastogne-Lüttich, Paris-Tours and the Lombardy Tour Cycling World Championships live on the myth that comes only with distances of 250 and 280 kilometers. And we do not want to change this."
UCI disproves the arguments given by the Organisational Committee of the World Championships The Organisational Committee of the World Championships gave some arguments in favour of shortening the professional race on 24th September 2006. Chevallier disproves: the opinion of the Organisational Committee of the World Championships that a race over 220 kilometers is more thrilling are rebutted by the Frenchman who points to the last World Championships in Madrid. "These WC were thrilling from beginning to end at high average speeds of more than 42 km/h. Another important issue is the cut in the number of team members from twelve riders from the best nations to nine since last year. This allows for a more open race, which makes it more difficult for the large nations to use tactics."
The Secretary General of the World Championships Wolfgang Weiß in two issues points to organisational advantages: a race shortened by one hour would lower TV production costs and reduce problems in the transport and the parking supervision system. On this Chevallier comments: "The organisation must adapt to the event and not the other way around!"
The Salzburg proposal - a concept for the future? At the end of the two pages of reasons Philippe Chevallier thanks the Salzburg WC organisers. "We have really liked the concept from Salzburg which in addition to the cut in the tracks also includes other interesting approaches, for instance how to make cycling races more interesting for athletes, spectators, and media representatives. We will definitely discuss it further and include the comprehensive concepts of the Cycling WC in Salzburg into our planning, is Chevallier’s conclusion of his pleas.
The Organisational Committee of the World Championships has accepted the decision. Says the World Championship’s Secretary General Wolfgang Weiß: "UCI is the organiser and has the final say. In the future, however, it would make sense to take the interests of the various groups into account. This applies to everyone from the athletes - the principal players - via the visitors, media representatives, the organisation on site to the local population."
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Two days before the opening of the 2006 UCI Road World Championships in Salzburg a so-called "Jedermann-Charity-Cycling Tour" will take place on the original track of the Road Races. This charity event, which is of benefit for the biggest austrian charity organisation "Licht ins Dunkel", will take place on 17th of September. Actor Peter Simonischek is going to be the godfather this uniqe opening event.
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Dott. Heinz Schaden, Sindaco - Città di Salisburgo
Il ciclismo è molto popolare a Salisburgo. La bicicletta è uno dei mezzi di trasporto preferiti dalla popolazione, la rete di piste ciclabili è d’altra parte una delle più estese dell’Austria. Inoltre anche il ciclismo professionista ha una grande rilevanza. Sono particolarmente soddisfatto che Salisburgo sia riuscita ad aggiudicarsi i Campionati del mondo di ciclismo 2006. I Campionati del mondo sono una delle maggiori manifestazioni sportive a livello mondiale e con cadenza annuale e rappresentano un importante moltiplicatore per il ciclismo e un avvenimento indimenticabile per gli appassionati. Pertanto i preparativi procedono già a pieno ritmo. Penso già all’emozione di vedere le singole gare e gli sprint finali nel cuore della città.