The development of cycling as an e-sport creates exciting new opportunities for professional cyclists. But for the sport to work optimally, rider data (particularly sensitive health data) must be respected and managed lawfully, in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation, and other relevant legislation in over 100 countries.
The International Riders’ Union is looking forward to joining the working group on the introduction of the new discipline of Cycling E-sports that the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) is putting in place. «It is a good thing that the e-sport companies are starting crucial projects for this new discipline, involving pro road racing riders who bring kudos and value to the sport. However, because this is an entirely new discipline, it will need ad-hoc regulations. The CPA believes protecting the riders’ freedom of choice concerning the sharing of their sensitive data (heart rate, height, weight, watts per kg, etc.) is a matter of paramount importance. Riders must be free to decide individually whether to let the teams release their data – and if so, at what cost – or to use their data personally for promotional reasons, or even to keep them entirely private. Sensitive data is the individual rider’s exclusive property and cannot be shared without their permission. The use of riders’ data in the e-sports context has broad legal and commercial implications that must be dealt with by the governing body of cycling, alongside all stakeholders, as soon as possible.
Online sport is opening up new opportunities for professional riders, and they must be able to seize them transparently, lucratively and in full confidence that their rights are protected. Later this month the CPA will discuss this subject with the Association of Teams upon renewal of the Joint Agreement. The CPA appreciates that the UCI will soon create the working group that the CPA will be part of to discuss this urgent matter and we hope that the sport groups will be open to acknowledging these fundamental rights of the riders in the Joint Agreement.
Insurance is a key issue for the group and as such it will also be on the agenda of the meeting with the AIGCP. Serious injuries occurring in recent competitions have proved the inadequacy of the current coverage in the event of permanent invalidity.