“I do not see myself in this attempt at defamation”

Adriano Quintanilha left an open letter on Monday following the scandal involving W52-FC Porto.

Adriano Quintanilha published an open letter on Monday, after the Union Cycliste Internationale withdrew the sports license of W52-FC Porto, which prevents him from participating in the Volta a Portugal. “Anyone who knows me even a little knows that I fight for the values ​​of truth, honesty and respect for the word, values ​​that I received from my parents, humble people, but good people, that’s that’s why I don’t. see me in this attempt to assassinate the character of which I am the target with my sponsors”, one reads.

“I accept that we can and must always do better: the clubs, the Portuguese Cycling Federation and the Anti-Doping Authority of Portugal (ADoP). Therefore, in my team, I have given and will continue to give instructions to transparency and zero It is in this line of action that we have implemented an internal code of conduct, adapted to the latest anti-doping legislation”, explains Adriano Quintanilha.

The W52 structure, linked to FC Porto for six seasons, has won the last nine editions of the premier competition of the national calendar, although the triumphs of its Spanish rider Raúl Alarcón, in 2017 and 2018, have been withdrawn from it for “use of Prohibited Methods and/or Substances”.

On July 15, eight cyclists and two staff members of W52-FC Porto were preventively suspended by the Anti-Doping Authority of Portugal (ADoP) as part of Operation Clean Proof. At the end of April, ten W52-FC Porto riders were indicted and the team’s sporting director, Nuno Ribeiro, was even arrested, along with his deputy, José Rodrigues, during the operation in charge of the Department of investigation and criminal action. DIAP) from Porto.

“The police operation, involving a total of approximately 120 elements from the North Directorate and also from the Center and South Directorates, the National Anti-Corruption Unit and the Criminal Investigation Departments of Braga, Vila Real and Guarda, also had with the collaboration of the ADoP”, detailed the PJ, on April 24, indicating that during the same “various substances and clinical instruments were seized, used in the training of athletes and having an impact on their performance sports”.

Last Thursday, FC Porto suspended the association contract with the W52 cycling team.

Read Adriano Quintanilha’s full open letter:

Bearing in mind the many misunderstandings and perplexities surrounding the reports on the doping case that afflicts the Calvário Várzea Clube de Ciclismo team [clube inscrito na Federação Portuguesa de Ciclismo. W52-FC Porto é o patrocinador] and which ended up resulting in the provisional suspension of his UCI license and subsequent ban from participating in sporting events, I think it is important to clarify what is really going on.

The attention and concern we have for our sponsors, our staff and our athletes justifies it, and this is what moves me in this matter, leading me to meet you. I entered the world of cycling in 1989, from which I retired in 2001. I returned in 2014, having signed in 2016 the current “naming and brand licensing agreement” with FC Porto, first through Vintage Podium and later, until today, through the Calvário Várzea Cycling Club Association.

I am not and have never been a professional cyclist. My whole life has been dedicated to the world of clothing, working hard and daily in my businesses. For this reason, I have delegated functions to professionals with the aim of having a winning team, with the best possible conditions, only comparable to those of teams that race at World Tour World Tour level, honoring uncreated debts by me vis-à-vis the athletes and the UCI, and engaging those who seemed to me to be the best professionals, always ensuring that they act in strict compliance with all sporting rules, namely fair- play and the non-use of doping substances.

It is therefore with the greatest surprise and astonishment that last April, I was confronted at my home, where I was resting, by my athletes and other staff, realizing the existence of the legal proceedings in progress. Seeing the state of desperation of some athletes, I quickly tried to become an assistant in the same, which I was refused. However, believing in his words and in the fact that the analyzes carried out were negative, I did what any human being would do with the least principle: defend my athletes, which I will continue to do until proven otherwise. Of course, anyone who has proven wrongdoing must formally and publicly apologize, either to myself or to the Club and its sponsors.

Anyone who knows me even a little knows that I fight for the values ​​of truth, honesty and respect for the word, values ​​that I received from my parents, from humble people, but from good people, that is why I do not see myself in this attempt to assassinate the character of which I am the target with my sponsors.

I accept that we can and must always do better: the clubs, the Portuguese Cycling Federation and the Anti-Doping Authority of Portugal (ADOP). This is why, in my team, I have given and will continue to give instructions so that transparency and zero tolerance are rules known to all. It is in this line of action that we have implemented an internal Code of Conduct, adapted to the latest anti-doping legislation.

Finally, I hope this letter can help each reader to come closer to the truth that we all desire. It is true that Portuguese cycling demands and deserves, and it is certain that I will not abandon this objective so quickly, because I am already preparing the future with our main partners.”

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