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Mosquera: Staying quiet has been the wrong tactic

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Ezequiel Mosquera in his new Vacansoleil jersey

Ezequiel Mosquera in his new Vacansoleil jersey (Image credit:
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Ezequiel Mosquera at the top of the world, Bola del Mundo

Ezequiel Mosquera at the top of the world, Bola del Mundo (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo-Galicia).

Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo-Galicia). (Image credit: Jean-François Quénet)

Ten months on from the announcement that he had tested positive for hydroxyethyl starch, as he rode to second place in the 2010 Vuelta a España, Ezequiel Mosquera has broken his silence to rail at the length of time it is taking to resolve his case. He has also admitted that it has been a mistake for him to stay silent for so long given some of the things that have been said and written about him during that period.

Nominally a Vacansoleil-DCM rider but still to make his debut for the Dutch team that signed him on a two-year contract after last year’s Vuelta showing, Mosquera insists that he has done no wrong. He is currently listed among the team’s pre-selection for the start of the Vuelta later this month, but is unlikely to be able to ride as a decision on his case is still pending with the Spanish Cycling Federation.

Speaking on television in his home region of Galicia in north-west Spain, Mosquera stated: “It’s been very difficult for me to stay silent because there have been stories and headlines that have forced me into taking tranquillisers in order to be able to deal with them, not because of what they were saying, but because they were totally false.”

He continued: “I’ve also said that my second place at the Vuelta a España was achieved on my own merit and I will keep saying that.”

The 35-year-old Spaniard described the decision for him to stay quiet until the case had been resolved as “the wrong tactic.”

He explained: “I’ve not been able to defend myself, but we thought when we made the decision it was the best thing to do.”

Hydroxyethyl starch can be used a masking agent for blood-boosting products such as EPO, and the Vacansoleil want to guarantee that there has been no wrongdoing on Mosquera’s part before allowing him to make his racing debut in their colours.

Mosquera confessed that he now has little chance of lining up the Vuelta.

“We decided that the best thing to do is to wait until the case is resolved and, personally, I don’t see a solution in the short term. If they are going to sanction me I wish they would get on with it because I need to have a solution.”

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Peter Cossins has written about professional cycling since 1993 and is a contributing editor to Procycling. He is the author of The Monuments: The Grit and the Glory of Cycling's Greatest One-Day Races (Bloomsbury, March 2014) and has translated Christophe Bassons' autobiography, A Clean Break (Bloomsbury, July 2014).