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Former UCI chief Hein Verbruggen dies at 75

Published June 14, 2017

AIGLE, Switzerland (BRAIN) — Hein Verbruggen, who was president of the UCI from 1991 to 2005, died late Tuesday of leukemia, the UCI has confirmed.

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Verbruggen is credited with consolidating international amateur and professional cycling federations under the UCI, and with launching the UCI ProTour, which evolved into today's WorldTour. 

However, a 2015 independent report commissioned by the UCI reported that Verbruggen helped cover up Lance Armstrong's doping. Verbruggen denied all the allegations, even after Armstrong confessed to doping. 

Although current UCI president Brian Cookson has sought to separate the organization from Verbruggen, the former UCI president did remain an honorary member of the International Olympic Committee until his death.

In a statement Wednesday, IOC president Thomas Bach said, "Hein Verbruggen was a fearless fighter for his sport. Thanks to his great engagement and his management skills, he greatly contributed to the success of the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 as Chair of the Coordination Commission. For this he will be always remembered."

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