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Vacansoleil rider returns to competitive action after his possible involvement in the Operazione Amateur and immediately finds back to his winning ways

Photo: Sirotti

JOSÉ RUJANO GUILLEN

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23.06.2013 @ 14:01 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Jose Rujano (Vacansoleil) missed his main season objective at the Giro d'Italia due his possible involvement in the Operazione Amateur doping investigation but is now back in action. He win his first race back at the Venezuelan time trial championships in a close battle with Carlos Galviz.

 

When Jose Rujano left his well-known surrounding at the Androni team prior to this season to sign a contract with the Vacansoleil team, his was scheduled to captain the team at the Giro d'Italia where he finished on the podium in 2005 and won a stage in 2011. He had a slow start to the season but during his final warm-up race, the Tour de Romandie, he appeared to ready for his campaign.

 

With the start to a few days away, his Vacansoleil chose to withdraw their star rider from the race, citing his possible involvement in the Italian doping investigation Operazione Amateur. The team claimed to have been assured that Rujano was not involved at all but since his name was mentioned in the papers, the team decided not to compromise its search for a new sponsor by lining up a rider who could potentially catch some negative publicity.

 

Since then Rujano has not raced but he claimed in an interview with Biciclismo in late May that he had now set his sights on the Tour de France, the Vuelta a Espana and the world championships and that he would use the Tour de Suisse to prepare. However, he was not included in the team's line up for the Swiss race and he has not been selected for the Tour de France either.

 

Yesterday he finally returned to competitive action at the Venezuelan time trial championships. And he immediately found back to his winning ways. On a short 23km course in Santa Cruz de Mora, he took his third ever win at the event, distancing Carlos Galviz by 17 seconds and Vini Fantini rider Yonathan Monsalve by another 15 seconds.

 

Rujano will now turn his attention to the national road race championships but it is still unclear when he will be back in action on European soil.

 

Result:

1. Jose Rujano 36.04

2. Carlos Galviz +0.17

3. Yonathan Monsalve +0.32

4. Eduin Becerra +0.41

5. Jose Chacon +1.05

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