UCI to introduce minimum wage for top professional women riders by 2020

Lizzie Deignan used her local knowledge to claim victory in the Women's Tour de Yorkshire. LC/Tim De Waele/Corbis via Getty Images

The UCI has announced that top professional women riders will be paid a minimum wage by 2020.

The announcement was made on Wednesday following discussions at the 2018 UCI Road World Championships in Innsbruck, among a series of reforms that aim to further professionalise women's road racing.

UCI President, David Lappartient said: "I welcome this fundamental development for women's cycling and the strengthening of the position of women in our sport's governance, two subjects which are among the central points of the UCI's Agenda 2022.

"The decisions taken today increase the professionalisation of this sector by drawing inspiration from, but adapting appropriately, from the model that led men's professional road cycling to become one of the most popular sports in the world."

The UCI has not announced how much the minimum wage will be.

Also on the agenda is a new top tier of women's racing, UCI WorldTeams, that will be introduced and will be "comparable" to men's teams.

The women's racing calendar will also be restructured, organised around the following four classes: UCI Women's WorldTour, UCI ProSeries, 1 and 2, which the UCI say is a model similar to the men.

Other objectives of Agenda 2022 include reinforcing the UCI Women's WorldTour and the UCI women's teams, and the implementation of equal access to women's and men's competitions organized by the UCI and at the Olympic Games, by creating the same formats. The UCI is also aiming for an equal prize money policy.