Following on from our previous update to Cycling Ireland members and in a continued effort to engage as we continue to emerge from a difficult period for our organisation, we would now like to give you a further update.
The new Board continues to work with the staff to resolve a number of legacy issues in the best possible way. In that regard, work continues on implementing the various governance reforms recommended by Sport Ireland’s KOSI Audit report issued in November 2021. With respect to a 2020 Capital Grants issue, the Gardai have made enquiries regarding the matter and Cycling Ireland has and continues to co-operate fully with them in this regard.
In relation to the independent BDO report commissioned by Cycling Ireland to investigate the proposed commercial arrangement with EvoPro Racing, Cycling Ireland received a draft report from BDO in early April but, as per normal procedure, this was circulated for comment to various parties mentioned in the report before the finalised version could be released. We expect the final report to be issued in short order and the Board will then seek to make the findings of both the KOSI Audit and the BDO report available to members, to the extent possible.
One unexpected outcome of the BDO investigation was the discovery of historical irregularities in Cycling Ireland’s registration of Irish UCI continental racing teams. A full disclosure was made to the UCI about this in April and we are currently engaging with them to ensure such issues do not arise again. New processes and procedures put in place by the new Board will ensure future compliance with all UCI requirements in this regard.
In April, Cycling Ireland was invited to appear before the Oireachtas Committee on Tourism, Culture, Arts, Sport and Media. We advised the Committee that, while we are fully committed to transparency, we would be limited in what we could discuss for legal reasons until the full BDO report was released. To enable a full and frank discussion of all the facts dealt with in the report, we requested a postponement. For the avoidance of doubt, Cycling Ireland will appear before the Oireachtas as soon as we can.
While it is clear that the Board and company are dealing with legacy issues, we would also like to appraise members of other areas of significant progress.
The final vacant seat on the Board of Directors has been filled by Will Byrne, who also has the role of Cycling Ireland Treasurer. Will has extensive professional expertise in financial roles and an equal depth and breadth of experience in sporting matters. You can read Will’s full profile here.
The consultation and review process with members, agreed by the new Board as part of its root and branch overhaul of the organisation at its first meeting in February, begins with a consultation day with a representative group of the membership today, May 21st. This will be followed by consultation with Provincial sub-committees, Commissions, individual members and other stakeholders. This process will be ongoing until the Autumn.
Various Board sub-committees have been established to bolster the Board’s governance role. A People and Culture Sub-Committee (chaired by Louise Reilly) has been established with the purpose of advising the Board on all matters relating to staff and Board planning and will focus on the key areas of Leadership, Culture, Talent, Capability, Staff and Training.
A Governance and Compliance sub-committee and an Audit, Finance and Risk sub-committee (chaired by Susan Aherne SC) have also been established. Certain members of Cycling Ireland with key experience have already joined these sub-committees and the Board are keen for additional members of the organisation to join. The Board would welcome expressions of interest in that regard.
Various Working Groups are also being formed to assist the Board in its work. For example, following on from the appointment of Iain Dyer as High-Performance Director in February, a High-Performance Management Group is being established to support the High-Performance Director and to provide expert advice to the Board in relation to the execution of the high-performance strategy. Emma Hunt-Duffy is also heading up a working group to look at commercial opportunities for the organisation.
Finally, working groups to address key items such as sustainability, advocacy, participation and coaching are in the process of being established. These are all positive developments for Cycling Ireland and will help us move forward confidently.
Various staffing changes are also taking place including a new Chief Financial Officer and a new Operations Manager, both being appointed on an interim basis. These appointments will ensure that the organisation has more robust financial controls and planning mechanisms in place going forward. With such significant change taking place, there will be some administrative difficulty in the short-term and we thank members and clubs in advance for their patience with this.
Finally, we wish to assure members that the Board and staff of Cycling Ireland remain fully committed to our work on rebuilding our organisation. We have so much to look forward to over the coming months including the return of the Rás Tailteann. We would like to thank you all for your continued support during this time and we look forward to seeing you out on the road, tracks or trails very soon.
The Board and CEO
View Board Profiles Here