Brian Cookson will become the next president of the International Cycling Union after defeating incumbent Pat McQuaid in a vote.
Cookson, president of British Cycling, won by 24 votes to 18 following a controversial election during which McQuaid's eligibility to stand was queried by some.
It came after a morning of heated discussions at the Congress over whether McQuaid should even be allowed to stand after he was not nominated by the Irish federation or the one in Switzerland, where he lives.
Brian Cookson elected new UCI President against Pat McQuaid with 24 votes out of 42 #Toscana2013— UCI (@UCI_cycling) September 27, 2013
After the result was announced, Cookson, who will now step down as president of British Cycling, issued a call for unity in the sport.
He said: "It is a huge honour to have been elected president of the UCI by my peers and I would like to thank them for the trust they have placed in me today.
"The campaign to get to this point has been intense but I am under no illusion that the real work starts now.
"So I call on the global cycling community to unite and come together to help ensure that our great sport realises its enormous potential.
"This is the vision that will drive and focus my activities over the next four years.
"My first priorities as president will be to make anti-doping procedures in cycling fully independent, sit together with key stakeholders in the sport and work with WADA to ensure a swift investigation into cycling's doping culture.
"It is by doing these things that we will build a firm platform to restore the reputation of our international federation with sponsors, broadcasters, funding partners, host cities and the International Olympic Committee.
"Ultimately this is how we grow our sport worldwide and get more riders and fans drawn into cycling."