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UCI finally approves disc brakes for road racing

After years of controversy, disc brakes are finally approved by the UCI for road racing

The UCI finally authorized the use of disc brakes in road races, with an announcement of the green light given this week at after the UCI Management Committee meeting in Arzon, France. Both road and BMX racers will also be able to use disc brakes as of July 1.

Trial use of the discs in the pro peloton started in August 2015.

In a press release, the UCI said that the decision had been made “following nearly three years of tests, and in agreement with various stakeholders — teams, riders, mechanics, fans, commissaires, and the bicycle industry via the World Federation of the Sporting Goods Industry (WFGSGI).”

The trial was interrupted in April of 2016 after Spanish rider Francisco Ventoso from Team Movistar was injured at Paris-Roubaix in a crash, with disc rotors being blamed for his injuries. Initially, disc brakes were banned by some national federations including France and Spain due to safety fears.

The ban was ended at the beginning of last season with the requirement that disc rotors have rounded rather than sharp 90-degree edges.

However, in November 2017 Cycling Canada approved the use of disc brakes in non-UCI road races across the country.

Disc brakes were also approved in all British events from 2018 onwards.

Tom Boonen became the first rider to win a UCI race using disc brakes when he took Stage 2 of the 2017 Vuelta San Juan, while Marcel Kittel was the first to earn a Grand Tour stage win on discs in last season’s Tour de France.

Tom Boonen became the first rider to win a UCI race using disc brakes when he took Stage 2 of the 2017 Vuelta San Juan