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Jesus Manzano: "The whole tree is rotten"

Former Kelme rider Jesus Manzano, who last year rocked Spanish cycling with allegations of systematic doping within Kelme, has waded into the controversy around Roberto Heras' non-negative A sample test. Manzano told AS that he was not surprised by Heras' test result.

"It doesn't surprise me that Roberto is positive," said Manzano, " not him or any other. What seems obvious to me is that Roberto is not the only one."

For Manzano, the accusation against Heras comes as a vindication. "They said I was just one rotten apple, but I believe the entire tree is rotten. It's not just Roberto. The others need to speak!"

Manzano singled out the doctors that help prepare riders for races for particularly scathing criticism.

"It is all about money," he said. "The ones getting rich are the doctors, not the riders. Heras has earned a good salary, but most of us don't earn anything like that. But I have seen a doctor ask six million pesetas for his services [about US$40,000]. For aspirins and mineral supplements you charge six million?"

While at Kelme, Manzano rode with both Heras and Aitor Gonzalez, who also turned in a positive test at this year's Vuelta. But he was not surprised that two Vuelta winners had returned positive tests. "Do you think you win the Vuelta on chocolate and bread?" said Manzano.