USA Crits teams L39ION and Aevolo Cycling have both announced that they won't compete anymore in the series, while partner races Boise Twilight Criterium and Tulsa Tough have both discontinued their association with the national series too, following the recent suspension regarding USA Crits' long-time managing director, Scott Morris.
Morris is currently serving a ban imposed by US Center for SafeSport, an independent organisation set up under the United States’ Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017. The SafeSport ban began on September 14, and American Crits' parent company Swagger LLC have since terminated Morris from all responsibilities with the series and the company itself.
The allegations relate to "misconduct."
USA Crits website stated (opens in new tab): "Scott was a contractor to USA Crits and has been terminated from all responsibilities with USA Crits and parent-company Swagger.
"We support SafeSport and their mission, and we have and will continue to adhere to their guidelines. This decision is not an indication of Swagger’s belief or disbelief of the validity of the ongoing investigation."
Reports highlight that Morris was indicted in 2008 in Georgia for "45 counts of sexual exploitation of children for the knowing possession of movies and images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct on his home computer."
He also faced 20 other counts in an earlier case, but all charges were subsequently abandoned, with Morris instead convicted of computer services theft. However, the SafeSport ban and these charges aren't related, despite the exact nature of the ban not being released yet.
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Los Angeles-based L39ION, an American criterium racing team, announced via Twitter that it will “no longer be participating in USA Crits races or events.” It will now host its own criterium, unaffiliated with USA Crits, at the end of October.
Partner races, Boise Twilight Criterium and Tulsa Tough, have also both discontinued their association with the national series, following Morris' SafeSport ban.
Tulsa Tough Blue Dome Criterium stated on Instagram: “Saint Francis Tulsa Tough has chosen to end its partnership with USA Crits effective immediately."
Meanwhile, Boise Twilight Criterium took to Facebook: "In response to recent news and the concerning allegations, the Boise Twilight Criterium has elected to end its partnership with USA Crits."
Due to recent revelations and events, as of immediately, L39ION of Los Angeles will no longer be participating in any USA Crits races or events.October 16, 2021
After learning what @USACRITS deems permissible amongst its organization and staff, our decision to omit their events from our racing calendar has been cemented.October 16, 2021
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Ryan is a staff writer for Cycling Weekly, having joined the team in September 2021. He first joined Future in December 2020, working across FourFourTwo, Golf Monthly, Rugby World and Advnture's websites, before making his way to cycling. After graduating from Cardiff University with a degree in Journalism and Communications, Ryan earned a NCTJ qualification to further develop as a writer.
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