UCI continues to ban use of disc brakes for road racing

CHARLES LEE |4th September 2016 | NEWS

Last year, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) laid down a revolutionary mandate in the UCI road racing realm, approving the use of disc brakes on road bikes on a trial basis.  At that time, UCI envisaged the adoption of disc brakes at all levels of racing by 2017 and was leaning towards this direction if the trial is successful.

Whilst several racing teams, such as the Dutch-based Roompot-Oranje Peloton, were¬†receptive and quick to incorporate¬†disc brake¬†technology into their racing fleets, the Pari-Roubaix crash put a halt to the trial. ¬†In that race, Spanish rider¬†Francisco¬†Vents, who rides for the UCI Movistar Team, disclosed¬†that the¬†injury – a deep gash¬†that exposed a part of his shinbone –¬†he had sustained during the crash was¬†caused by the rear brake disc of the bike of another fallen¬†rider.

In its statement to Cyclingnews on 2 September 2016, the UCI confirmed that the suspension on the use of disc brakes will not be lifted¬†any time soon. ¬†The UCI said,¬†“We decided to suspend the trial of disc brakes in road races following a request to do so made by the Association Internationale des Groupes Cyclistes Professionnels (AIGCP) ‚Äď which represents all professional cycling teams.”

The Roompot-Oranje Peloton is reportedly retrofitting its race bikes with rim brakes to conform to the latest UCI directive.

But apparently, the UCI is not giving up on disc brakes totally, adding that it is “continuing to evaluate the situation and the test will not restart” until it, along with other representative groups, are satisfied¬†that the trial can resume.

The UCI also gave some hints on the changes that will be made to the regulations for frame construction for the 2017 season. ¬†One possible change is the removal of the 3:1 ratio tubing rule that restricts how ovalised tubing is made. ¬†The UCI told Cyclingnews,¬†“The UCI Management Committee recently approved the removal of the specific clause in its Regulations relating to profiles in frame construction entering into force in January 2017, will have a marginal impact on frame design. ¬†But it is important that our sport embraces innovation and evolves with its¬†time.”