Lotto Soudal used a special aerodynamic gel during Dauphine’s team time trial and now the UCI banned it ahead of the Tour de France.
According to the governing body’s rules “it is forbidden to wear non-essential items of clothing or items designed to influence the performances of a rider such as reducing air resistance or modifying the body of the rider.”
The UCI and its technical specialist Jean-Christophe Péraud said, “It’s prohibited until further notice.”
“I received a call from Jean-Christophé Péraud, he told me that the rules will be adjusted in the coming weeks,” Team Lotto-Soudal manager Marc Sergeant said.
“I told Péraud that Team Sky still uses with those skinsuits. Those strips on their shoulders and arms work to reduce the air resistance at high speed. He said that he would also tackle that, but Péraud said we should not put anything on our riders’ legs with the intention of riding faster.”
“It’s an aerodynamic gel,” Lotto-Soudal doctor Servaas Bingé said. “It’s Speed Gel. The gel reduces air resistance.
“The higher your speed, the more profit you can get from aerodynamics, all small bits help and we try to support our riders in any way, so the speed gel provides an aerodynamic advantage and perhaps also a mental advantage.”
“The rules are pretty vague, but in principle you cannot add anything to increase aerodynamics if it is not necessary,” Teun van Erp, a scientist at Team Sunweb, told NOS.
“Ribbing in the clothing is a gray area because you have to wear clothing. With that gel I see no other point than to promote aerodynamics. As I interpret the rules, this is not allowed. But that’s what I thought of Sky’s ‘bubbles’ too.”
“In three days, the UCI said Speed Gel is not allowed, but Chris Froome’s salbutamol file has been dragging since last year’s world championship,” Sergeant added.