On the occasion of the first UCI Cycling Gala of the Year that took place in Abu Dhabi, the AIJC had the opportunity to award two trophies, starting with the AIJC Award for the most media friendly organization, rider or team. The second one was the UCI/RCS/AIJC Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Cycling Journalism.
Considering we were informed just before the gala took place that it would be possible to award those trophies during the official ceremony, we had to make a quick decision about the winners. The AIJC board met as a consequence to consider who deserved both trophies.
Giant-Alpecin received the AIJC Trophy. That team did indeed many efforts to build excellent relations with the media. Both at the start and at the finish of the races, they used a special mixed zone close to the team bus. Riders ware always available whatever the circumstances are. The day after their rider lost the Vuelta a España, Giant-Alpecin organized a full hour meeting to allow the media to interview Tom Dumoulin.
In agreement with the UCI and RCS, the AIJC Management Committee decided to award the UCI/RCS/AIJC Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Cycling Journalism to Jean-Paul Ollivier. The Frenchman achieved an incredible amount in cycling, working for radio, television and written press. He moreover wrote a lot of books about cycling in general and the Tour de France in particular. He is also a pioneer in combining cycling and tourism.
Next year the AIJC Award will be awarded according to a different vote procedure. The board will chose five candidates during the month of September and all the AIJC members will be able to vote for the AIJC Award 2016 winner sending an email.
The Board of the AIJC is satisfied about 2015. More and more AIJC members are collaborating actively and the number of members keeps on increasing, particularly in new cycling nations, which means that the AIJC is also contributing to cycling globalization.
In 2016, the AIJC will continue improving several aspects. Membership and AIJC press card are attributed only to professionally active in cycling media. New requests will be more carefully analyzed. In case of doubt about their relevance, the Management Committee will take the final decision.
The new AIJC press cards (plastic with inserted pictures) received a warm welcome. Not only the members appreciate them but also cycling other stakeholders who considered it represent a new step towards AIJC professionalism. The collaboration with Wings, which prints the AIJC cards, is excellent.
In 2016, new cards will be published on three different dates: January, April and June. New members who register after that date will be added on our website but will receive their card only the year after.
New symbols will be added on the cards: J, V, PH, R or TV. It will help the organizers knowing immediately if the member is a journalist, a videographer (camjo) a photographer, a person working for the radio or a person working for television.
Our goal will remain the same one in 2016: to improve media working conditions and we will therefore collaborate together with the UCI, the organizations, the teams and the riders.
Guy Van den Langenbergh
Board members AIJC