The UCI Pro Cycling Series makes every effort to ensure its participant’s race clean. They want their series participants to follow the anti-doping policies. As a result, they have implemented drug testing for out-of-competition, in-competition, and during the competition. The drugs that have made the UCI’s banned substances list are those as defined by the World Anti-Doping Code.
The UCI has delegated a part of their anti-doping activities to a group called the Cycling Anti-Doping Federation (CADF). The CADF is a separate entity than the UCI. This means that they do not work for the UCI. As a result, there is an implied additional layer of trustworthiness for the testing practices. This group does the testing for all levels of UCI cycling.
The list of substances and methods of use follow the WADC’s drug list guidelines. Moreover, some of the drugs listed are only banned during the 12 hours prior, during, and directly after the cycling event. Examples of drugs that are banned in and during the cycling events, but not at other times are cannabinoids and stimulants.
However, there is a caveat to that rule. A cyclist, who uses, cannabinoids may still have the substance in their system when the 12 hours prior to the cycling event time clock begins. What was once allowed, would then be banned. As a result, most cyclists likely stop the non-banned out of event substances well before the countdown begins. Although, with some drugs, there are graduated levels of substance presence when testing. Cannabinoids are one such substance. A cyclist can have a small level of cannabinoid detected in their sample and still be alright to cycle. The threshold for cannabinoids is 15ng/ml.
It is the cyclist’s responsibility to know what is on the banned list. There is no allowed excuse for not knowing a certain drug or supplement was included on the list. As a result, it is very important for the cyclists to be proactive and know what they are taking into their system as well as what is on the list. Regarding racing, it is important for the cyclist to remember that cannabinoids and stimulants are illegal at cycling events. Therefore, these substances can also not be on their person when arriving at the event.
Another interesting fact is that cyclists are strongly discouraged from using supplements. Many supplements are produced in countries without strict production guidelines. Without these guidelines, it is impossible to know what has been tossed in the capsule. Again, ignorance is not bliss. The cyclists must be aware of what is in their bodies.
A UCI Pro Cyclist must know what is allowed and what is not. It is entirely their responsibility to know and to be aware of what they ingest into their bodies.