At just 19 years old, Cian Uijtdebroeks has taken his first steps in the WorldTour peloton since the start of the season. The runner from Hannut in the province of Liège is in full discovery of the professional world, some practices of which he does not like. In an interview granted to the magazine Bahamontes, Uijtdebroeks mentions the high consumption of drugs to promote performance.
“When I am beaten by a runner who ingested 3g of paracetamol in the final of a race, it frustrates me”explains the rider from the Bora-hansgrohe team who does not want to follow the same steps, “Although it’s legal, I won’t do it. Even if it makes me lose races or I’m offered to try, I’ll stick to my own plan. Everyone does what they want but I don’t want to not play with my long-term health in order to be able to perform in the short term.”
Uijtdebroeks, who was one of the best riders in the junior ranks last year, went straight to the ranks of the Bora-hansgrohe team. He would have heard of such practices from his first professional race, the Saudi Tour in February: “Why would you take 2.5 g of paracetamol in the final? You have to do it when you are sick and still, not in such quantities”he believes in Bahamontes, “I don’t drink coffee, so a caffeine gel has a huge impact on me. Am I going to take the amount of caffeine from two cups of coffee on the run? Yes because it helps me focus. But I will take the equivalent of 2 cups and not 15. I rather prefer to eat twenty red beets…”
“You should also not forget that until the end of last year, when I rode in the juniors, I only ate sandwiches with sugar and bananas”, concluded the 19-year-old runner.
The words of our compatriot echo those of other cyclists like Thibaut Pinot or Guillaume Martin who castigated the difference in doping legislation between the different sports, in correlation with the injections suffered by Rafael Nadal during the last Roland-Garros.
For his first months as a professional, Cian Uijtdebroeks has already impressed on several occasions, notably during the International Coppi and Bartali Week where he was in the top 10 before unfortunately having to retire after a fall during the last stage. After finishing in a fine 16th place in the very difficult and very tough Tour of the Alps, the Belgian confirmed at the end of May by taking 8th place in the Tour of Norway, won by Remco Evenepoel.
In the coming weeks, Uijtdebroeks will be at the start of the Belgian championships, against the clock then on the road before competing in the Sibiu Cycling Tour at the beginning of July and the Tour de l’Avenir (the equivalent of the Tour de France for the U23s ) during the month of August.