We write this as we learn of the adverse analytical finding and subsequent penalty imposed by the UCI on Martin Maes following anti-doping tests carried out at Round 1 and Round 2 of the 2019 Enduro World Series.
We will not pass comment on the details of this case as that is the duty of the UCI and the athlete involved but we acknowledge and respect the outcome of this unfortunate case and 2019 series rankings will be updated accordingly.
We will state that from the beginning of the Enduro World Series, as we celebrate our 50th event this coming weekend, that we have always placed athlete health and safety at the very fore and have worked hard to create everything a new sport needs, ultimately partnering closely with the UCI and adopting all associated international sporting laws and practices while taking the international lead on others, including medical and head injury guidance. This week in Canazei we host our first anti-doping rider and team educational seminar alongside the UCI Legal Anti-Doping Services, a further investment of the EWS in athlete education and best practice.
What is important in this and previous cases is not to apportion blame, but to look at how everyone can avoid these occurrences from happening again.
Therefore, the prescription of medication outside of EWS racing that has ultimately lead to the penalty imposed on Martin Maes must serve as a lesson to all athletes, organisers, teams, coaches and medics that although the athlete will always be held responsible in the outcome of an adverse anti-doping finding, all parties in mountain bike sport must be responsible at all levels for learning and operating at the highest level, and with the best knowledge available.
We will continue to work to educate all parties in and out of the EWS family of riders, teams and events and urge all other parties in the sport out-with the official EWS sphere recognise the potential impact of their actions on riders and seek as much education as possible in order to protect the sport, and every rider within it.
As we continue our work on these topics we will take no questions on this topic and ask that any questions are directed to the sanctioning body in this case; Louis Chenaille, UCI Press Officer (Louis.Chenaille@uci.ch).