Former Barloworld rider Moisés Dueñas is on the verge of a return to the pro peloton thanks to the considerable assistance of Spain's highest sporting authority, the Consejo Superior de Deportes (Superior Council for Sports, CSD). Banned for two years after testing positive for EPO during the 2008 Tour de France when he was riding for Barloworld, Dueñas had the ban cut to one season after he collaborated with the authorities. As part of the same deal, the CSD said that it would do all it could to find the Spanish rider a place on a pro team. That commitment now seems close to being fulfilled, with Spanish pro continental outfit Xacobeo-Galicia his almost certain destination.
According to the Spanish press, CSD director-general Albert Soler approached José Ramón Lete, director-general of sport in Galicia's regional government, with the proposal at the end of last month. Lete is reported to have been interested in taking on Dueñas, a former winner of the Tour de l'Avenir who has re-established himself as one of the leading amateurs in Spain with the Super Froiz team since his return to racing halfway through last year.
Lete passed on his recommendation for the move to Xacobeo team manager Pedro Alfaro at the end of last week. Since then the team have been weighing up the pros and cons of taking on Dueñas, with the pros apparently winning out. Some reports are suggesting that Javier Guillén, director-general of Vuelta organiser Unipublic, has also pushed for the signing to take place.
A report in Dueñas's local paper in the town of Bejar in western Spain suggests that these negotiations have been done so discreetly that even Dueñas has been unaware of their progress. The 28-year-old rider is due to take part in a training camp in Galicia this weekend with his Super Froiz team, but it seems increasingly likely this will be his final appearance in their colours if the Xacobeo deal is confirmed.