Sir Dave Brailsford has defended Team Sky‘s use of therapeutic usage exemptions (TUE), and said that his team are looking to make the process completely transparent by making all TUE information public
Sky and former rider Sir Bradley Wiggins have come under fire in recent weeks after hackers released details of his previous TUEs, as well as those of Chris Froome.
Wiggins’s six exemptions included three for the intra-muscular injection of corticosteroid triamcinolone before the Tours de France in 2011 and 12, and the Giro d’Italia in 2013, which was used to treat allergies and was signed off by the UCI.
There is no suggestion of wrongdoing by any of the parties involved, but Brailsford defended the ethical nature of the process, saying he has complete trust and believe in the integrity of it.
The Team Sky manager went further to say that his team is looking at making all TUE information available to the public in future, if his riders consent.
“On one hand you’ve got the people who would like to know what is going on against the contrast of medical confidentiality,” Brailsford told Sky News.
“I think in there is a balance. We’ve reviewed this over the years and we’ve changed our policy, we’ve changed the way we do it and going forward I think we are going to take the next step which is being debated on a wider basis to look at, with the consent of the riders, making all TUEs transparent.”
He added: “You ask yourself the question: if a rider needs a TUE you can either make it public so everyone knows they have a TUE, or they don’t compete. I think that’s the way this whole debate is heading. These records are supposed to be confidential, but they’re not.”
Self-confessed dopers such as David Millar and Michael Rasmussen have claimed in the last weeks that the triamcinolone drug that was prescribed to Wiggins acts as a powerful weight-loss drug.
Talking to the BBC, Brailsford confirmed that he was aware of what Wiggins was taking at the time and insisted the medication was not administered to enhance performance.
“I have known Bradley a long time and he is an asthma sufferer and he has struggled with allergies for as long as I have known him,” Brailsford said.
“I know that at the time there was a recommendation to see a specialist, he went to see a specialist and was then given permission by the authorities.
“I trust and believe in the integrity of that process.”