Manolo Saiz. In my own words.

The Return of Manolo.

I am Manolo Saiz and I want to come back to cycling, to run a team again, to be a player, a man among men. It is simply my destiny. I am Manolo. I have hair on my chest.

Perhaps you recognize my name. I ran the powerful Once squad and then Liberty Seguros. We had some issues with doping, things I prefer not to discuss, the past is past. I do not dwell on what I had for dinner last week. A bicycle moves forward, reverse is for electric wheelchairs and journalists who write lies.

I make no apologies, I admit nothing. I have served a sentence I did not deserve and am now free to do as I wish. Only the naive expect apologies and I am a man among men.

I have had much time to consider some things —  I do not call them mistakes. I prefer to consider them oversights, my process was not sufficiently careful, I did not foresee certain eventualities. However, I have new plans and will not repeat that which led to my long winters away from this sport I love.

For example, cell phones can be incriminating and I do not wish to use them anymore. A man talks to another man, eye to eye, ear to ear. There are no misunderstandings or evidence. The same may be said of computers because they hold many things that are best hidden. I have a new system that must remain mine alone, Manolo’s way.

I have learned my lesson about code names. My associates were perhaps too fanciful in the use of certain names and this had unfortunate consequences. I have no need to discuss these things; I only state for example that using the name of a rider’s dog is unwise. Correct preparation is not a game.

I must be more careful in my professional associations, this I know from Operacion Puerto. I must be honest and admit I always disliked Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes. A brilliant man but sloppy and I cannot have that happen again. I have always liked Daisy Fuentes. She is a woman among women but obviously has no expertise in blood boosting — but I love her pilates workout. At 50, I am fitter than ever.

I have taken a page from those who are perhaps more clever than myself. I have just made a sizable donation to Mr. McQuaid. A monetary gift to the UCI. I think, down the road, this could be handy. There are many ways to gain favor and I appreciate the flexibility of this organization. Mr. McQuaid is a man of the world, a man in the way Manolo is a man. These things need no explanation.

I shall return for I am a man reborn. I shall keep my legendary temper under control. I will not rage or threaten or imply acts of violent retribution. I would never again say things like ‘I stuffed a finger up the Tour’s arse.” I am older and wiser, I have a new system which I have alluded to, yet my dreams are as big as ever. I am Manolo, I cannot think small.

Some call me a pariah, a symbol of the old way of doing things, the dirty way, the way of doping. They say cycling is cleaner than ever, a more beautiful sport than ever. They do not wish to welcome me back to the friendship of the team buses. But I am Manolo. A man among men. I say there is always room for a little dirt.

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  • myles

    on the button :)

    • http://www.atwistedspoke.com walshworld

      Myles, I have an entire box of buttons just for stories like this. Matt

  • http://Peaceaz.org Al

    Thanks for reminding us that while the riders end up doing the time, often it is someone behind the scenes that is pushing them down that path. Thanks for making the point. And making it funny!

    • http://www.atwistedspoke.com walshworld

      Al, funny is good. Our aim is to be the Onion of professional cycling. Guys like Saiz are the ones who creat the doping culture and who often aren’t punished. Matt

  • http://mildstallion.wordpress.com Al

    Matt – you are a writer among writers.

    • http://www.atwistedspoke.com walshworld

      Al, I'll just be honest. I like compliments almost better than Google Adsense dollars. Feel free to keep them coming. Thanks, it keeps me writing. Matt

  • http://bikingtolive.com Bryan

    Matt, just discovered your site a few days ago and don’t know how I missed it before. Awesome stuff. You’ve got a talent for writing that makes me jealous. Subscribed.

    • http://www.atwistedspoke.com walshworld

      I must have more jealosy. It’s my birthday on Tuesday and I love jealosy, more, more, more. Thanks for checking in and keep reading. Matt

  • Alex Simon

    Fantastic stuff Matt. The electric wheelchairs line had me laughing out loud.

    I just can’t believe that this man will be allowed back with a team. Surely the momentum has swung too far away from these old school gangsters.

  • Ron

    Matt, ur an Onion among Onions! But I cant help but think how hypocritical the Operation Porto thing is. Did the pro tennis players or football players that were also using the doc’s services ever have any legal problems? I never heard anything about them!! As a matter of fact I NEVER hear of pro footballers getting caught using anything and you know that gotta be doing it given their injuries and schedules. Cycling is the whipping boy in the sporting world for doping because its not as popular and the big sports. I dont care, I still love it. As a matter of fact I wish I had a little extra something to help me get up the Col de Vence yesterday….