Nairo Quintana He does not retire, he will continue to run, but that is the big question: with which team?
For now, he does not have it, he said that he was going to travel to Europe to get a contract and that he hopes to announce it soon.
The month of January is coming to an end, the season is underway and getting a place in an important team, with which you can compete in high-calibre events, is not impossible, but it is difficult.
It is clear that the two blood tests from the Tour de France in which he was found the substance tramadol, prohibited in competition by the International Cycling Union (UCI), have been the starting point of his difficult present.
Due to this fact, Quintana was disqualified from sixth place in the Tour, lost the cash prizes and the Arkea-Samsic team stopped obtaining 455 points in the UCI classification.
Nairo appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (TAS), but this entity dismissed the appeal and agreed with the UCI, in another hard blow from which he has not been able to get up and that has done him a lot of damage.
Since that moment, a series of circumstances have been triggered that have damaged the image of the rider and his possibility of continuing in the world peloton.
The UCI sanction was joined by the harsh statements by Roger Legeay, president of the Credible Cycling Movement (MPCC), who told EL TIEMPO that Nairo did not respect the rules.
“It is not necessary to reverse the responsibilities, it was Nairo Quintana who did not respect international standards and for this reason he was convicted by the UCI and confirmed by the TAS,” the leader said during the week.
Nairo is not sanctioned, he can compete, he has not tested positive, tramadol is not a substance that is on the prohibited list of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), but the doors have been closed to him, he does not have a contract and his situation is not the best.
(You can read: Piqué, without escape: they play music by Shakira in the middle of the Barcelona stadium).
Is there a veto?
In recent days there has been talk of a possible veto that exists in international cycling over the 2014 Giro d’Italia champion, which is the biggest reason for not finding a team.
EL TIEMPO consulted the champions of the Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a España, who analyzed what is happening with the Boyacá cyclist, who will try to continue pedaling.
“Everything that has happened is very complicated. It is clear that the issue of tramadol is difficult, since it is prohibited in competition, hence the disqualification in the Tour de France. He can run, he has no equipment, but It is true that the rules must be respected”, indicated Stefano Garzelli, champion of the Giro d’Italia in 2002.
And he added: “I’m glad he didn’t retire, that’s the best, but that he didn’t get a team because of a veto, I don’t understand it, I don’t think so. I hope I find a group, but the rules are to be respected.
Johan Bruyneel, who was Lance Armstrong’s coach in his prime, said in December that the Tour de France pressured several teams not to hire Nairo, which also sparked controversy, even if the words came from a person who was suspended for life by the TAS for the use of drugs prohibited between 1997 and 2007.
“Many riders have made bigger mistakes than Quintana, they are human beings like him, and they have been given another chance. No.I don’t know those cases of vetoes due to these circumstances in world cycling”, recounted Carlos Sastre, champion of the 2008 Tour.
For the Spanish rider it is a pity that Quintana is without a team, because he is a cyclist who gives a show, a winner, but he understands that the teams already take care of themselves in everything.
“These are the budgets that are managed, and that at this time the quotas are closed is a serious inconvenience for him, but I don’t see why the vetoes, I don’t know and it is not possible for that to happen”accurate.
Gilberto Simoni he won the Giro d’Italia in 2001 and 2003. In 2002 he tested positive for cocaine twice and knows what it’s like to be between a rock and a hard place with issues of violation of the regulations and prohibited substances.
“Nairo’s problem is that he had a problem, in this case tramadol, which is not a doping substance, but he received a sanction. The fact that he does not get a team is not a matter of veto, it is that the teams, nowadays, take great care not to hire riders with problems of this nature ”said Simoni, who was acquitted of his positives by the Disciplinary Commission of the doping accusations.
“The teams don’t want problems. Rather, you have to look at it from another side, he is a 32-year-old cyclist and their opportunities are closed off more, another issue would be with a younger 22-year-old cyclist, they do easily get second chances. I am pleased that he continues, that he does not stop and hopefully he wins soon ”, declared Simoni.
Pedro ‘Perico’ Delgado He was champion of the 1998 Tour de France and the 1989 Vuelta a España, and although he regrets what Nairo Quintana is experiencing, he bluntly said that he was not the victim of a veto.
“The easy thing is to blame the one on the side. It is clear that Nairo has a lot of poster, he is a cyclist who can join any team, but today it is not that there is a veto, what happens is that the teams take care of themselves, they look at the background of the riders that they are going to hire and that for they are delicate”Delgado told EL TIEMPO.
“There is no law, there is no rule that says that you cannot run. Nairo is not sanctioned, he has not tested positive, but the groups that exist, both in the World Tour and in the Proteam, find it difficult to take that step because they had a problem, nobody takes a risk because they can get into trouble, “he added. Slim.
LISANDRO ABEL RENGIFO
SPORTS JOURNALIST EL TIEMPO
In networks: @LisandroAbel
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