Framed – The Engineers Who Secretly Dope Racing Bikes

Photo of author
Written By Mahmoud Sarvari

The ultra-competitive sport of professional cycling has thrown up a new form of cheating – doping bikes.

The sport’s regulator – the International Cycling Union (UCI) – is installing X-Ray cameras at all next season’s grand tour and classic events to beat the fraudsters.

Thermal cameras have already been deployed at the last two Tour de France in a bid to deter cheats.

The first proven case involved Belgium’s Femke van den Driessche.

He was banned for six years for ‘mechanical doping’ on 2016 – and the rumour is plenty of other riders have tried to beat the judges by souping up their bikes in the past decade.

Doping a bike involves fitting a secret motor to assist the rider.

Corrupt sport

“I will be focused on guaranteeing the credibility of the results, especially on technological fraud,” said UCI president David Lappartient, when he took on his role last year.

He also spoke about deterring corruption that has left the sport with a ‘disastrous reputation’.

Cycling is no stranger to allegations of cheating.

Recently, the Team GB cycling team that has won so many recent Olympic medals and riders Sir Bradley Wiggins and Chris Frome have all faced accusations of cheating.

And former world champion American Lance Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France wins and Olympic bronze medals for admitting his part in a doping scandal.

How to dope a bike