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UCI to recommence trial of disc brakes with new safety measures in January

Cycling's governing body confirm trial will be restarted following 'months of discussions'

The trial of disc brakes in road events will recommence on January 1, the UCI today announced.

Disc brakes were originally trialed at the back end of the 2015 season, with a full test planned for the whole of the 2016 campaign, but the trial was halted after Fran Ventoso suffered deep lacerations in his leg in a crash at Paris-Roubaix, allegedly caused by disc rotor.

However, following ‘months of discussions’ between cycling’s governing body, and representatives from riders, teams and the industry, the trial will recommence with new safety measures – disc brake rotors ‘should be modified to ensure the perimeter edge of the rotor does not contain any 90 degree edges but are smoothed or chamfered’. The trial will then be reviewed on a monthly basis.

The decision was announced by the UCI alongside several changes to track cycling disciplines after the meeting of the UCI Management Committee at the current world championships in Doha.

The UCI’s trial of disc brakes in road events will recommence with new safety measures to ensure the outer edge of the rotors are either smooth or chamfered (pic: Hope)

A press release issued by cycling’s governing body, read: “The UCI Management Committee also decided to recommence the trial of disc brakes in road events. This decision comes after months of discussions between representatives of teams, riders and the industry, and following confirmation from the Cyclistes Professionnels Associés (CPA) and Association Internationale des Groupes Cyclistes Professionels (AIGCP) that they support the trial.

“Following extensive examination of the equipment and a detailed safety report, it has been agreed with manufacturers that the trial will restart on January 1 2017 exclusively with discs which should be modified to ensure the perimeter edge of the brake rotor does not contain any 90 degree edges but are smoothed or chamfered.

“The trial will be closely monitored and formally reviewed every month.”

Among the other changes announced by the UCI Management Committee are widespread alterations to track cycling, including a total revamp of the omnium.

The six-discipline event will now feature just four events, all bunch racing, with the flying lap, kilo time trial and individual pursuit all dropped.

Instead of taking place of two days, all four events – the scratch race, tempo race, elimination race and points race – will take place on a single day.


Big changes have also been announced to the omnium in track cycling, which will now feature four events – all bunch races – and take place over a single day (pic: Alex Whitehead/

A women’s Madison event has also been introduced, while the rule for a gained lap in the discipline has been brought into line with the points race – 20 points, with sprints every ten laps.

Team pursuit qualifying will now feature two teams on the track simultaneously to make the event more streamlined, meanwhile, while the keirin has been modified to make the sprint distance three laps.

Finally, the competition format/schedule of the team sprint, kilo, 500m time trial and individual sprint have been slightly modified, though the rules of the events themselves remain the same.

Other changes relate to BMX Supercross and mountain bike competitions.

UCI president Brian Cookson said of the changes: “While it is important that we safeguard the essence of our cycling disciplines, we also need to be brave and embrace change in order to give our sport real meaning to those who are watching live or on screens across the world.

“The changes announced today show that we are moving with the times to ensure that our disciplines are presented in the most compelling way possible, and are rooted in the desire to attract and inspire even more fans into cycling.”


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