Cycling Ireland takes difficult decision to forgo UCI Road World Championship attendance

Cycling Ireland has taken the decision to forgo attendance at the 2022 UCI Road World Championships in Australia from the 18th to 25th of September.

High-Performance Director, Iain Dyer explained the rationale behind the decision.

“In the face of hugely increased costs for targeted High-Performance events already completed and planned for the remainder of 2022, competing in Australia will stretch our resources far beyond what has been anticipated this year. The UCI Road World Championships is also an event where success is far from assured. For the road riders, attending the European Championships in all categories this year was a significant commitment and one we felt we could manage effectively. The World Championships in Australia is a different proposition altogether.”
“It bears mentioning that going forward, the High-Performance Unit will need to be extremely focussed on achieving our strategic aims in major championship events across all disciplines. With the spend on all events becoming so high post-Covid, it’s important that a projected outcome from attending an event is linked to key development aims, a qualifying process, or Olympic and Paralympic success.”
It is not a given in future that we will attend everything we qualify for or take up all our allocated quota slots. We have already seen this year several nations make strategic decisions on attending events based on available resources and budgets, so clearly, we are not alone in this respect, and are managing it in a similar manner.”

The High-Performance Unit remains committed to balancing the spread of opportunities across the programme. Dyer continued;

“It’s important we don’t turn the taps off in other areas of the high-performance activity and focus solely on the senior elites. It has been an essential part of our year to support Junior and U23 riders in events such as the Tour L’Avenir, the Rás and upcoming Rás na mBan or the Junior Track World Championships, where Irish athlete have shown great promise. That is where our next champions might come from. Equally, there may be other times where we dial up our activity in other disciplines or categories because strategy dictates it is a more appropriate use of resources.”

Cycling Ireland’s Chief Executive, Matt McKerrow added;

“This decision has not been taken lightly – and reflects the need to be certain we can stand over the value and benefit of expenditure right across the sport. With the exponential cost increases in attending events post Covid, including some we’ve experienced already this year where flights and accommodation have escalated by some 70-80% on previous editions, we’ve taken the decision to prioritise resources to other high-performance event and development activities at this time.