Having raced bicycles for 25 years, Myles McCorry was tired of seeing cycling humiliated by annual doping scandals. The systemic drug abuse in sport has far-reaching consequences for both the athlete and the image of sport.
The scale of the problem with regard to cycling and the extensive media attention on doping has inflicted huge damage to the sport. Credibility has been lost at the professional level and participants at all levels have been impacted.
BikePure was formed to tackle the endemic drug use in cycling, to give a voice to the clean rider and restore the integrity of cycling for the next generation. The idea was conceived by Myles McCorry and Andy Layhe out of the doping scandals that tarnished the 2007 Tour de France and became operational in 2008.
In taking on the drugs culture, Myles also has to tackle the deep-rooted cynicism that allows such drug-taking to remain tacitly accepted. The most important and significant part of Bike Pure is the education of riders about the importance of honest and fair sport.
What started in a spare bedroom in Co. Louth in 2008, with the help of ex professional Andy Layhe, has quickly grown to an organisation with the backing of over 20,000 members in 81 countries. Irish professional riders have led the way, with hundreds of professional cyclists and seven world champions using BikePure to tell the world that they are drug free.
From its origins as an anti-doping campaign, it has now developed, utilising its talented membership, to tackle the root causes of doping and help drive improvements to the testing procedures and restore trust to the sport. BikePure also aims to protect the mental and physical health of current and future champions. Myles plans to transfer the successful cycling model to other sports and promote safe sport globally.
The social enterprise is sustained through sales from their online store. Bike Pure also enjoy close ties with many world and national bodies including the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) and the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport. They have applied pressure on authorities worldwide to implement stricter doping sanctions.
When I get an email from someone I have never heard of, on the other side of the world offering to help, it strengthens my conviction to help save sport from the greed and danger of drugs.