There is a lot of discussion in triathlon whether drafting should be allowed in the cycling portion or not. The International Triathlon Union has introduced this to "prepare triathlon for the Olympics". The claim
is that this is more attractive for the spectators.
Drafting should not be part of triathlon.
If you would ask the spectators at the triathlon in Geel, I think that most of them actually found it much more difficult to follow the race as you can't really recognize anyone when a pack flies by.
The most important reason why drafting should not be allowed, is because it goes agains the nature of the sport. When triathlon was "invented", it was conceived as an individual
sport, a time trial with swimming, cycling and running. I know that drafting is legal in the swim and run portions, but the gain is mostly mental here. On the bike, drafting has much bigger effects.
The people who have introduced drafting into the sport have to consider that this will make triathlon a team sport. You can only win a drafting legal race if you start running with the
leaders and don't have to use a lot of energy on the bike. It is therefore very useful to have one or more helpers who can make sure that nobody can get away, and/or that you can get
back to the leaders if they swam faster than you.
In fact the consequences may be more drastic than that. If nobody is willing to make sure the leading group rides at a decent speed, then even the bad swimmers can get back, and
the race is reduced to the run portion only. I thought this already was an existing sport.
This is an argument which is often used to indicate that drafting has to be allowed. I have to admit that it can be very difficult at some races (mainly races which are on small roads with
lots of turns). However, it is often a question of whether you WANT to enforce the no drafting rule. If you actually punish all competitors who break the rule, no matter how good
or famous they are, then the athletes will know soon enough that they can't cheat. This will fix the problem. It has been shown by some race organizers. The most important example is
the Hawai 1996 race, where a lot of competitors were caught at the beginning of the race (include both the later male and female winners), and athletes were cautious after that.