After yesterday’s extraordinary and petty email from UCI president Pat McQuaid to Jonathan Vaughters on the subject of the radio ban, the stylish head of Garmin-Cervelo struck back.
Vaughters has promised to shave off his outlandish sideburns when the radio ban ends and or Pat McQuaid resigns. “At the end of the day, I had to take action. I’ve got the high moral ground and the long sideburns. It’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make.
The added motivation to see Vaughters clean shaven may just be the push that knocks down the UCI’s house of cards. HTC-Highroad’s Bob Stapleton was the first to lend his support. “I’ve had my differences with Vaughters in the past but if we can get rid of the radio ban and the sideburns, that’s a win-win,” said Stapleton.
Radio Shack powerbroker Johan Bruyneel was equally positive about Vaughters offer. “It is a bold proposal. I like the sideburns because they remind me of a young Merckx but the essential is the removal of the radio ban. I talked to Lance and he feels the same way.”
Giro Impresario Angelo Zomegnan also weighed in on the sideburn strategy. “I feel strongly both ways, it’s an intriguing proposition. Certainly, a Vaughters without sideburns is an offer we would have to consider,” said Zomegnan.
For Vaughters, it was simply a case of win or lose. “I had to up the ante, sweeten the pot. If I can get a dozen major teams to form our own professional league, I’ll shave everything, even the top of my head. Whatever it takes — I’ll get a full body wax,” said Vaughters. The time to strike is now.”
The UCI president fired back an immediate response. “As I have repeated said, I will not bow to any attempts a blackmail. This includes sideburns.”