The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has officially stripped Lance Armstrong of his seven Tour titles.



“He has received a lifetime period  ofineligibility and disqualification of all competitive results from August 1, 1998 through the present, as the result of his involvement in the United States Postal Service (USPS) Cycling Team Doping Conspiracy,” a USADA statement said on Friday afternoon.



This comes in the light of Armstrong’s choice to not challenge the evidence against him yesterday evening.



“I refuse to participate in a process that is so one-sided and unfair,” Armstrong said in a statement published on his website. “Regardless of what Travis Tygart says, there is zero physical evidence to support his outlandish and heinous claims.”

Tour de France organisers ASO have yet to comment.



Evidence of PED use


The USADA statement continues later: “Numerous witnesses provided evidence to USADA based on personal knowledge acquired, either through direct observation of doping activity by Armstrong, or through Armstrong’s admissions of doping to them that Armstrong used EPO, blood transfusions, testosterone and cortisone during the period from before 1998 through 2005 and that he had previously used EPO, testosterone and hGH through 1996.”



“… Additionally, scientific data showed Mr. Armstrong’ use of blood manipulation including EPO or blood transfusions during Mr. Armstrong’s comeback to cycling in the 2009 Tour de France.”



With his disqualifications, it is likely that Bradley Wiggins would move up to third place in the 2009 Tour de France.



Armstrong will also be stripped of his Tour de Suisse win in 2001 and Dauphine Libere titles from 2002 and 2003.

Armstrong’s anti-doping violations

USADA listed the five anti-doping rule violations for which Armstrong is being sanctioned:



-Use and/or attempted use of prohibited substances and/or methods including EPO, blood transfusions, testosterone, corticosteroids and masking agents.

-possession of prohibited substances and/or methods including EPO, blood transfusions and related equipment (such as needles, blood bags, storage containers and other transfusion equipment and blood parameters measuring devices), testosterone, corticosteroids and masking agents.

-trafficking of EPO, testosterone, and corticosteroids.

-administration and/or attempted administration to others of EPO, testosterone, and cortisone.

-assisting, encouraging, aiding, abetting, covering up and other complicity involving one or more anti-doping rule violations and/or attempted anti-doping rule violations.

Related links


Lance Armstrong to be stripped of his seven Tour titles



Judge dismisses Armstrong lawsuit against USADA

  • Phil Riley

    I wonder if the USADA can strip Armstrong of his victory over Cancer, after all I’m sure he must of used drugs in that battle.

  • MIKE

    Willie.
    Justice was only delayed because Mr Armstrong used his wealth to put a legal go slow on proceedings. Only now, when the case against him seems to be overwhelming, he comes out with the feeble excuse that he is tired of the whole affair so he will not contest it.
    Yea, right. He is not contesting it so as to keep most of what went on secret, and give his fanboys an excuse to still bow down to the great one (sic)

  • Keith Bingham

    IT’s all very well for USADA to go banging on about how much shit they have on Armstrong, but why should we take their word for it when so far they have not yet revealed all the evidence nor the names the witnesses.

  • Ken Evans

    “How he was never caught is a mystery….”
    Some have claimed that the UCI helped cover up his doping.

    It has to be realised that advanced tests, sensitive enough to detect modern drugs, (such as EPO, Growth Hormone, Clenbuterol in small amounts, etc), have only recently become available.

    Armstrong competed in an era where the testing methods did not match the drugs in common use in the pro peloton.

    I admire riders like Christophe Bassons who spoke out against doping, despite being unpopular in the peloton, and could ride with the best riders in the world clean.

    The SKY team seems to be clean, and yet its riders can produce race winning results, at the very highest level, the races that they haven’t been able to win, might indicate the races and racers where doping is used but not detected.

    Anybody that puts someone on a special level simply because of athetic performance is rather superficial, there are many other ways to judge someone, such as by the charity work they do, that benefits people other than themselve$.

  • Paul Taylor

    You can’t wipe out a mans achievements because you say it’s so, he did what he did (whatever that may be) in the era he did it in, an unclean era. To take away his achievements the same should be applied to all cyclists that have won the TDF, doesn’t leave many does it, Wiggins probably.

    Organisations supposed to be protecting this sport are destroying it, I didn’t watch cycling for nearly a year after the Contador fiasco dragged on and on and now well, I can’t see me sticking with it unless the UCI and the rest of them focus on the here and now and stop destroying our history.

    Lance won those races, so did Mercx, Fignon and all the other greats, let’s move to get rid of grandstanding media circus’s of self destruction to cleaning up the sport and athletes now in this new and just as valid age before the sport is diminished any further.

  • dagenham dave

    Great – at last ! This has absolutely made my year ! I have always maintained he was a charlatan since he won his first tour. I have never been able to comprehend the sheep mentality of his supporters – have a look at comedy website Lance Support. Whilst I admired the man for his cancer recovery, I could never understand how this, lets face it (and this is something that is never mentioned) he was a pretty mediocre one day rider who then turned into superman! If he loses his seven titles and all other results – who should they be given to ? Nobody because all the runners up are suspect as well! Never failed a drug test ? Hey that doesn’t mean you never took them! Bye bye – good riddance – thanks for polluting our sport for years! As the saying goes it if it looks too good to be true it probably isn’t! ANY OF YOU LOT FEELING STUPID OUT THERE?

  • Willie

    Should there not be some sort of ‘statute of limitation’ for misconduct in sport? Would fans really be upset if blood samples were destroyed after 3 or 4 years. The Contador saga took far too long whilst Armstrong’s case has just been ridiculous. Of course drug cheats should be banned but it needs to be contemporaneous. “Justice delayed is justice denied.”

  • Mel Cassell

    Surely they do not have the authority to do this – it’s not an american event.

  • Gerry

    I’ve never been a Lance fan. Before the Cancer I though he was just an arrogant young American. Post Cancer, and after reading his books, I liked him less, but admired him greatly, and still do, for his courage in dealing with his illness, and even more for having the guts and determination to come back the way he did.

    I still don’t like him, as a public figure, a role model, or as a man. I shall always think he was/is arrogant, cocky and a bully, but:

    As we now know, since the start of the sport, many (a majority?) of riders who were able to achieve greatness, did so with chemical or other artificial aids. There are exceptions, and in recent times Boardman, LeMond and many others have been clear that they rode clean. Roger Hammond’s cooments on ITV 4 as part of the Vuelta coverage have been interesting.

    However, as someone else has said, if you’re going to go back to 1999 and strip titles from Armstrong, who do you give them to? The bloke who came 4th, or 9th, or who?

    At this distance, that’s just bloody stupid!

    And anyway, if USADA has really stated that they have ‘stripped Armstrong of his 7 TdF wins, what the hell is the TdF to do with them anyway? More arrogant bloody Americans! It’s for the UCI and ASO to pronounce on, and for USADA to liaise with WADA and the UCI, which they should have done before going public.

    I started Cycling in 1959, and my heroes from that era, Anquetil, Darrigade, Simpson, Altig, through the Merckx era, into the Hinault years and the Indurain reign, will aways be heroes. You can’t turn back the clock. What happened, happened.

    Did the best man always win? maybe not, but those wins were celebrated as such, and I’ve got most editions of the Comic back to 1960 to prove it, not to mention Sporting Cyclist, International Cycle Sport and Cycle Sport Magazine.

    The world has changed, there is now NO excuse and anyone caught doping now should be heavily punished, but going back 13 years? What does that achieve? Armstrong’s punishment anyway is really the probably fatal blow to his reputation from the publicity of the last 2 years or so.

  • William Hirst

    The way the USADA has gone about it just seems farcical. But Lance’s reaction to it vowing not to challenge the ruling seems a bit odd and out of character considering he ha a reputation as being a fighter, But Lance has acted seemingly odd and out of character his whole career including when he chased down Filippo Simoeni on stage 18 of the 2004 Tour de France. This is the behaviour of someone who has something to hide.

    But one thing for sure is, doping has been and could still be rife in the sport and no one knows the true extent of it. The sport’s good name has been well and truly dragged through the dirt by cheats who think they should have victories and respect but deserve neither and by greedy team management.

    But things are changing and getting better. Wiggo and Evans have both won the Tour and no one believes either of these riders dope and teams like Sky and Garmin have been founded on the ethos of sportsmanship and winning at any cost, just as long as that cost doesn’t involve cheating. The sport needs to learn from the past with an attitude in all levels that doping is not to be tolerated in any way.

    I look forward to the 2013 Tour de France.

  • AJH

    Direct reply to Simon Richardson. I suspect that I may be one of those you feel is questioning USADA. I understand their role (but thanks for presenting the ‘facts’, which may enlighten those who don’t). Just to be clear, I don’t have an issue with ‘what’ they (and WADA) do; I have an issue with ‘how’ they do it. I do not believe that it is unreasonable to expect senior officers of these organisations to behave with the utmost professional integrity and to obey not only the letter of the law (which may differ between countries), but also to ensure that they behave entirely ethically. The constant and repeated pronouncements by Travis Tygart, Michael Fahey (and Dick Pound before him) fall well-short of that professional behaviour and hence project the sense, real or not, of a ‘witch hunt’. This has become a story of personalities instead of being about the core issues and principles: not least, the damage that both the doping and the fall-out from it does to our sport. This has been compounded in this magazine, ‘Cycle Sport’ and others by blatantly biased journalistic pre-judgements and one-sided opinions related to this and other recent high profile doping cases. News and opinion is good, but sometimes it might be useful to let the process take its course before passing judgement in the media.

    I fervently want to see an end to doping in sport and particularly cycling; however, I find it difficult to support a system in which it is commonplace for senior figures to voice opinion and taint the process at virtually every turn. The system is full of lawyers, so let’s see them adhere to some of the basic principles of the law, including ‘innocent until proven guilty’ and maintaining confidentiality until the verdict is reached. How otherwise can the athlete in question be assured of receiving a fair and balanced hearing. It shouldn’t be a case of whether an athlete is likeable or not (Armstrong certainly divides opinion on that score), it should be a case of following a clear and unambiguous process in the right way until the job is done.

  • Diane Stallwood

    The journalists Paul Kimmage and David Walsh, have made their fortunes out of the Lance Armstrong era. They would argue their mission was investigative and to expose the cheats, but are happy to receive their 30 pieces of silver paid into their bank accounts. Cycling has moved on since those dark days, not because of their writings but because the sport itself recognises that a clean sport is the only way. The biological passport aswell as doping controls has ensured this remains the case.

  • Ron

    Fahey was the premier of the state of New South Wales,Australia at a time when it was the most corrupt state in Oz.As for Mr.Pound one should read the book,”Lords of the Rings” for information on him.
    Armstrong may well have questions to answer but some of his accusers are just low life.
    In addition I see that the French are now questioning Wiggins and Froomes results as they,the experts,are saying that their wattage outputs are as high as for the Armstrong years.

  • Arthur Shuttlebuck

    Simon, while I appreciate the points you make, I’ve still got some questions.
    For example, with point two. “Under UCI rules in a case where a non-analytical finding is the evidence (i.e. witness statements) the anti-doping body who uncovers the evidence has jurisdiction to sanction the athlete. USADA uncovered this evidence and therefore has full authority to sanction Lance Armstrong and others named in this case.”
    Are there not limits to what sanctions the anti-doping agency can enforce? We’d all understand a national anti-doping authority could impose a future ban on an athlete under their jurisdiction. But is declaring an athlete’s past results invalid (in competitions outside its jurisdiction) actually within the bounds of USADA’s power?
    Then the final point. “It would be remiss of USADA to make it’s evidence public without the permission of Armstrong or the other people named in the case.”
    If Armstrong is found to have committed acts that contravene the rules of the sport, how can his permission be needed to reveal the details behind why USADA reached that decision? If a person is found guilty in a criminal court (in fact, usually as the case is heard, ie: before a verdict is even reached) the accused has no say about what evidence is made public. Is that any different in cases of sporting malfeasance?
    Finally, I would think it a far more remiss action by an anti-doping agency to effectively make seven years of a professional sport null and void without giving the public some detailed evidence why.

  • William Hirst

    Rest in peace Neil Armstrong, American hero. Hang your head in shame Lance Armstrong, American liar.

  • BFG

    Who cares?

  • phil j

    I must be very naive, i thought PED,s were what you got at sixteen to get about on till you passed your driving test..

  • Cherry

    I’ve always thought that the case against was based on the principle that it is not possible to do what he’s done without doping and the fact that he’s not failed the various tests must mean that he’s found a foolproof method to beat the system. It seems to me that this whole businesst says more about the world of professional cycling than it does about Lance Armstrong.

  • milton

    It will be interesting to see the outcome of all this, I am under the impression that a case had to be proven beyond reasonable doubt ,try as i may i cannot see the case proven as such . a cheat Armstrong may well be , but putting emotion aside the whole thing has a very unsavory aspect to it . the gaggle of assembled witnesses would not , in any court of law ,excepting perhaps an American court ,hold much grace. some of the posts on this site have been the usual rants ,ie Armstrong is a cheat a bully ,and the rest . The fact that none of these people know L A except from the press cuttings ,shows the depth of feeling against the guy .the rants against Armstrong are perhaps motivated by the fact that he may not be a very nice man , many winners are not very nice people so what ? that dose not mean that they are all drug cheats i would feel the better if real proof not dubioushearsay was put forward that also includes the old french results as well

  • steve clarke

    Don’t know what to think at this moment. Like most cyclist’s I’m pretty pissed off with our sport being dragged through the mire again and again.
    I’ve followed Lance since US Postal days and have nearly every book about him, however the logical bit of my brain can not believe everything about him.

    His 7 Tour wins seemed unbelievable, and his speed/cadence up the mountains looks unnatural now.
    Maybe he did dope, maybe he didn’t, the USDA findings do look like a “witch hunt”, the UCI needs to get off it’s high horse and CLARIFY things once and for all.

    IF Lance is guilty then where does that leave us?
    Stripping him of his Tour wins is fine and dandy but WHO do you award the yellow jersey to?????

    On another cynical note, I’ve noticed that a lot of the Cycling media have presumed that Lance is guilty and have been publishing “witch hunt” articles themselves.
    Everyone in the media has a very short memory, You all made money out of Lance!

    Ok, this all sounds like I’m a big Lance fan and I’m defending him……
    I WAS a fan of Lance, NOW I’m not so sure, but I say again “I don’t know what to think!”

    It’s time for cycling to move on, let’s put a closure on the bad old times when doping ruled and look to a clean future.

  • Vance Harvey

    A very sad day for a man who has triumphed over so much that most normal mortals could never ever handle…..and has done so much to raise the awareness of cancer sufferers throughout the world – and of course many millions of $’s for that cause.

    So now all the people that are castigating Lance Armstrong and rubbishing him…will they all now turn their wrath onto Tommy Simpson who was a known drug taker – but who is still eulogised by most of the British cycling fraternity? I doubt it!!!!!

    It never ceases to amaze me just how selective so many people are in castigating certain drug users – assuming they are – but ignoring others who are also known users.
    It makes me want to puke reading some of the sanctimonious crap above – and also what appears in CW from various contributors and letters.

  • Simon Richardson

    Still lots of people questioning USADA in all of this. Here’s a few facts on them and their role.

    1) USADA is an anti-doping agency, it is their job to oversee anti-doping for all Olympic sport in the USA. If they have evidence that an athlete is cheating or has cheated in the past it is their job to investigate and bring charges. That is what they are funded to do. Not pursuing a case would be corruption on their part.

    2) Under UCI rules in a case where a non-analytical finding is the evidence (i.e. witness statements) the anti-doping body who uncovers the evidence has jurisdiction to sanction the athlete. USADA uncovered this evidence and therefore has full authority to sanction Lance Armstrong and others named in this case.

    3) Lance Armstrong was a competing athlete when this case was opened. He was competing in a sport that had signed up to the WADA code and was therefore subject to its rules.

    4) It is not yet clear if USADA will sanction riders who have given evidence. When they started their investigation USADA invited Armstrong to be a part of it and he declined. The investigation therefore went on without him being involved.

    5) A Federal judge ruled that USADA had the authority to rule in this case. The UCI also accepted that having initially questioned it.

    6) Armstrong had previously not had any issues with USADA and had even given them his backing in other non-related cases.

    7) An arbitration panel would have been made up of three members all of whom would have been independent of USADA. The hearing would have been completed behind closed doors unless Armstrong requested otherwise, meaning the evidence could be kept out of the public domain should Armstrong so chose.

    8) It would be remiss of USADA to make it’s evidence public without the permission of Armstrong or the other people named in the case.

    Simon Richardson
    CW Dep ed.

  • Simon Taylor

    A terrible but essential day. Lance Armstrong, a sporting hero of my youth is a complete scum-bag. He cheated and then lied about it, and to avoid the evidence being repeated in court has ‘cleverly’ decided to take this ‘I’m tired of fighting the accusations’ line and tried to describe his treatment as a ‘witch-hunt’. How does he sleep at night, or does he really believe his own lies?

    When I was younger I loved the drama, I wanted to believe his story, and the media wanted to write it, now he’s the lowest of the low. What a disgraceful embarrassment of a person, pretending it was all down to his recovery from cancer and allowing us all to believe the myth. Wake up people. He was a cheat. How can anyone defend him?

    All you naive apologists who think that his passed drug tests are evidence of him being honest…wake up. Tests didn’t exist to test for the things he was taking and the way he was taking them. If he wants to prove his innocence then he just has to sanction all his frozen blood being retested using modern testing methods. I wonder why he doesn’t?

    He should be removed from the records and we should try to forget him as quickly as possible. His only redemption in my view can be if his conscience tells him speak the truth about what he did and why.

  • Elderly Biker

    Eventually the witch hunt will go after Greg Lamond. Who’s to say he didn’t dope? Can he prove he didn’t? I’m old enough to remember the McCarthy red-baiting witch hunts of the 1950s. Very much like the present situation: unnamed witnesses, unsubstantiated claims, lots of suspicion. They didn’t find many reds but sure ruined a lot of careers.

  • Gordon Dale

    Sounds like the ideal time to move on, can’t see how most of the results for the past one hundred years plus, can be expunged from the records. Let all involved in our great sport be made fully aware that future doping will carry a life ban.

  • Col

    This crazy ruling is a joke, are the USADA going to recognise the 2012 Cycling road race winner Alexandr Vinokurov ? Will they allow all convicted and self confessed drug cheats to race and be recognised as winners in the USA? Will they ban, FOR LIFE, all past and present known drug cheats? Why are convicted and self confessed cheats allowed to currently compete in the USA? The USADA should either “put up or shut up”.

  • phil tregear

    Lance Armstrong is guilty of doping, lieing and bullying. Of that there can be no doubt. His defenders expect him to be treated differently to other professional athletes, why I cant understand. He benefitted hugely by his transgressions in terms of fame and money.

    He is different from other dopers in cycling in several regards:

    1. others found guilty have admitted their wrongdoing and then worked to clean up the sport ( eg David Millar)
    2. Many past riders admitted doping either during or after their careers ( ” we run on dynamite ” etc etc)
    3. LA used his position to bully the anti doping voices in the media and the peloton. His use of omerta as the head of the peloton sickened me.
    4. IMO he dishonoured the sport of cycling by exclusively targetting the Tdf yellow jersey above and beyond all other races. This was not true of previous stars, Anquetil, Coppi, Mercx etc.

    As for the excuse ” its all in the past”, that is irrelevant. If people want a cleaned up peloton then they must accept LA is guilty and his fame, titles and success were a drug fuelled myth. Ignoring that fact plays into the hands of those who support doping as they will chase the same illusory dreams. Other dopers in athletics of this era have been rightly punished and forgotten, the same should be true for LA.

    As for the UCI, either they support USADA or show themselves for what they have been for the past 20 years, hypocrites.

  • AJH

    Here is an example from USADA and WADA of win at all costs: precisely the the ethical stance against which they are apparently fighting. In proclaiming guilt without referring to evidence, we once again we see the leading figures in both organisations fail to live up to the high ethical standards they demand of the athletes: Michael Fahey (another lawyer – why do these organisations attract them?), like the aptly named Dick Pound before him, happy to proclaim Armstrong’s guilt on the basis that ‘there is no other explanation’. Really?! Might any person not get a bit worn down by 10+ years of constant attack and pursuit by a system that so clearly fails to be impartial towards athletes and in numerous cases assumes guilt at the outset (look at the figures for CAS). We may have opinions, but we don’t really know if Armstrong is guilty or not and on any objective basis, probably never will. I’m am vehemently anti-drugs in sport for many reasons which extend beyond the simple matter of ‘cheating'; however, I can’t help feeling that this is actually a dark day for genuine anti-doping movement as let’s face it, USADA and WADA have just made clear that their drug testing programme is largely ineffective and can be bested by the testimony of a few people who may or may not have a vested interest in providing that testimony. Senator McCarthy would have loved it!

  • CTS

    this extract from cycling world was new to me – provides a lot of context

    Former teammate praises USADA’s actions

    One of the early casualties of the Lance Armstrong doping saga was former teammate Frankie Andreu, a professional from 1989 to 2000 and a member of the US Postal Service team’s roster during Armstrong’s first two Tour de France victories in 1999 and 2000.

    Andreu, currently at Colorado’s USA Pro Challenge as an analyst, spoke to Cyclingnews in Breckenridge prior to stage 5, the morning after Armstrong announced he wouldn’t contest the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) charges, thus accepting a lifetime ban as well as forfeiture of his seven Tour de France titles.

    “Lance fights everything so I was very surprised that he chose to not fight the charges,” Andreu told Cyclingnews. “At the same time I’m really surprised that USADA has enough information to strip him pretty much of all his results. I never imagined that it would come to that.”

    In 1996, Betsy and Frankie Andreu were present in a hospital conference room where Armstrong, having just had treatment for cancer, is alleged to have admitted to his doctors to taking banned doping products. Ten years later in 2006, the pair were called to testify under oath at a civil suit between Armstrong and SCA Promotions, an underwriter who was refusing to pay a $5 million bonus for his sixth Tour victory because of allegations Armstrong had used banned substances in order to win.

    The Andreus testified at the hearing that they heard Armstrong admit to taking a list of substances: growth hormone, cortisone, EPO, steroids and testosterone to his doctors. In the same case, Armstrong’s primary doctor submitted an affidavit that he had never seen any evidence that Armstrong admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs, and Armstrong himself denied having ever made such an admission.

    A New York Times article published in 2006 stated Armstrong had testified that Betsy Andreu lied because “she hates me” and that Frankie Andreu had lied because “he’s trying to back up his old lady.”

    In that same New York Times article, Frankie Andreu admitted to taking EPO in preparation for the 1999 Tour de France. His wife Betsy stated she blamed Armstrong for Frankie taking EPO, saying he “didn’t use EPO for himself, because as a domestique, he was never going to win that race. It was for Lance.”

    “This thing is so much larger than Betsy and I,” Andreu told Cyclingnews, in reference to USADA’s investigation of Armstrong. “I’m like a speck of sand in this investigation and obviously I think there’s a lot of information out there and my main point is my wife and I never told a lie about the hospital room, there were other people in that room, and I want the information to come out to show that they covered it up and made us look like the bad guys.”

    Andreu had read Armstrong’s statement in which the embattled Texan likened USADA’s investigation to an “unconstitutional witch hunt”, and Andreu was left unimpressed.

    “His press release sounds like a broken record repeating the same lines we have already heard hundreds of times from him. He’s been saying the same thing for years.”

    Andreu supports USADA’s efforts to punish dopers, no matter their stature, and hopes this is indicative of a better future for the sport of professional cycling.

    “I think it sends a pointed lesson to all the riders that the sport is changing and it’s for the better,” said Andreu. “If you’ve done things that are wrong then you’re going to get caught.

    “USADA has shown some true grit by not backing down from a popular and wealthy athlete and showing that clean sport is a right for every athlete. If Lance really wants to help his foundation and help people with cancer, he should admit to the past, apologize and move forward with a clear conscience.”

  • CTS

    this extract from cycling world was new to me – provides a lot of context

    Former teammate praises USADA’s actions

    One of the early casualties of the Lance Armstrong doping saga was former teammate Frankie Andreu, a professional from 1989 to 2000 and a member of the US Postal Service team’s roster during Armstrong’s first two Tour de France victories in 1999 and 2000.

    Andreu, currently at Colorado’s USA Pro Challenge as an analyst, spoke to Cyclingnews in Breckenridge prior to stage 5, the morning after Armstrong announced he wouldn’t contest the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) charges, thus accepting a lifetime ban as well as forfeiture of his seven Tour de France titles.

    “Lance fights everything so I was very surprised that he chose to not fight the charges,” Andreu told Cyclingnews. “At the same time I’m really surprised that USADA has enough information to strip him pretty much of all his results. I never imagined that it would come to that.”

    In 1996, Betsy and Frankie Andreu were present in a hospital conference room where Armstrong, having just had treatment for cancer, is alleged to have admitted to his doctors to taking banned doping products. Ten years later in 2006, the pair were called to testify under oath at a civil suit between Armstrong and SCA Promotions, an underwriter who was refusing to pay a $5 million bonus for his sixth Tour victory because of allegations Armstrong had used banned substances in order to win.

    The Andreus testified at the hearing that they heard Armstrong admit to taking a list of substances: growth hormone, cortisone, EPO, steroids and testosterone to his doctors. In the same case, Armstrong’s primary doctor submitted an affidavit that he had never seen any evidence that Armstrong admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs, and Armstrong himself denied having ever made such an admission.

    A New York Times article published in 2006 stated Armstrong had testified that Betsy Andreu lied because “she hates me” and that Frankie Andreu had lied because “he’s trying to back up his old lady.”

    In that same New York Times article, Frankie Andreu admitted to taking EPO in preparation for the 1999 Tour de France. His wife Betsy stated she blamed Armstrong for Frankie taking EPO, saying he “didn’t use EPO for himself, because as a domestique, he was never going to win that race. It was for Lance.”

    “This thing is so much larger than Betsy and I,” Andreu told Cyclingnews, in reference to USADA’s investigation of Armstrong. “I’m like a speck of sand in this investigation and obviously I think there’s a lot of information out there and my main point is my wife and I never told a lie about the hospital room, there were other people in that room, and I want the information to come out to show that they covered it up and made us look like the bad guys.”

    Andreu had read Armstrong’s statement in which the embattled Texan likened USADA’s investigation to an “unconstitutional witch hunt”, and Andreu was left unimpressed.

    “His press release sounds like a broken record repeating the same lines we have already heard hundreds of times from him. He’s been saying the same thing for years.”

    Andreu supports USADA’s efforts to punish dopers, no matter their stature, and hopes this is indicative of a better future for the sport of professional cycling.

    “I think it sends a pointed lesson to all the riders that the sport is changing and it’s for the better,” said Andreu. “If you’ve done things that are wrong then you’re going to get caught.

    “USADA has shown some true grit by not backing down from a popular and wealthy athlete and showing that clean sport is a right for every athlete. If Lance really wants to help his foundation and help people with cancer, he should admit to the past, apologize and move forward with a clear conscience.”

  • phil j

    Ever pondered on what becomes of the hundreds of students that leave universities every year with degrees in chemistry?
    Some maybe creating performance enhancing/masking drugs which is far more lucrative than creating a new kitchen surface cleaner!
    Its like when war is raging and technology speeds ahead, the v1 and v2 rocket technology went on to later power the space race.
    People will always cheat, its human nature, A lot of people are quite happy that pro,s like Pantani can be criticised for using drugs whereas others like Eddie Mercks and Lance Armstrong can be glossed over and excused.

  • geegee

    A sad time of bad publicity for cycling; let’s put it behind us and welcome a new era of the sport

  • Steve Bauserman

    Union Cycliste Internationale

    Dear Sirs,

    I ask that you please not judge all Americans by the arrogance of the USADA or Mr. Travis Tygart. I am a citizen of the United Sataes of America, a resident of the State of Texas and a amateur cyclist who is embarrassed by the USADA actions.

    While I agree with the goals of having role models people can look up to in athletics, I believe the USADA has overstepped its authority. The United States Department of Justice did not find enough cause to pursue Mr. Armstrong, yet the USADA choose to pursue him in a relentless and almost vindictive manner.

    I am also embarrassed that the USADA would presume to strip Mr. Armstrong of a title awarded by another organization.

    It is my belief that the USADA has done as much to harm the sport of cycling as those users of drugs it seeks to exclude from the sport. I would encourage the UCI to request an investigation into the accountability and practices of the USADA by its single largest financial supporter; the Government of the United States of America.

    I have no first hand knowledge of Mr. Armstrong, his practices or habits. My concern is with the way an organization that uses the name of my country behaves with respect to others.

    Regards,

    Steve Bauserman
    Houston, TX
    USA

  • Jax

    On the one hand hearsay, innuendo, and gossip as ‘evidence’.
    On the other hand he passed over five hundred drug tests.
    Nobody is that lucky.
    Or that smart.
    I go with the science.
    He didn’t dope.

  • Peter Swann

    Being a keen cyclist and fan of the sport I am deeply saddened by this news.
    Love him or hate him Lance Armstrong has elevated cycling to a global audience and inspired many people in the word of cycling and through his Livestrong foundation.
    Facts are facts and doping and the Tour de France are intrinsically linked together (Simpson, Riis, Millers David and Robert & Richard Virenque) to name but a few.This has been the case throughout the history of the tour. How else could a human being maintain the levels necessary to compete and entertain the audience.

    If you look at Armstrong’s contemporizes of that era Pantani (now sadly deceased), Ulrich, Basso, Valverde, Vinokourov,Contador and other drug cheats Landis, Hamilton. It is fairly obvious that it is necessary to take other substances to enable participation in an event such as this.
    Cycling is governed by doping controls in and out of season and if you do not test positive following these rules then how can you be disqualified. I am not an Armstrong fan but would suggest that USDA has no jurisdiction in this case and that they should leave well alone. Armstrong has never failed a drug test.
    Here is a final thought if Lance Armstrong is to be stripped of his titles who should be declared the winner given the fact that doping was obviously rife in the sport at that time. How do you know which if any of the riders were clean? Armstrong won the tour 7 times using the same means as any other contenders so abiding by the same rules he won fair and square. I rest my case…………………………….

  • SJH

    This is all so much B.S. So, if Lance is guilty of doping and is having his tour titles removed, I take it Fauso Coppi and Jaques anquetil, who openly admitted to doping will also be stripped of their tours? Cycling is cleaning up and rightly so, but I think that posthumous bans and title stripping is completely wrong. Lance wasn’t found guilty over 7 tours, so it’s history. Contador was rightly banned as he was found positive, but while still racing. So were Landis et al. Unless you plan on investigating and banning all of Lances opposition in the 7 tours he won, leave him alone. He is an inspiration to so many cancer patients, for this reason alone it is so important that the past is left alone. It’s all too late. If you wanted to ban Lance, there was plenty of time over 7 tours surely? You will do more harm than good with this nonsence . Cycling is doing a good job of building a clean reputation. This investigation can only take people’s view of our sport back to the bad old days. Leave alone if you really have cycling’s best intentions at heart!!!!

  • Fudge Brownie

    The UCI needs to stand it’s ground and uphold all wins. This is just nuts. Turf wars are not becoming for our beloved sport. There will be no winners.

    We all need to join hands and move on. Deep breath… …hold… …and release.

  • Terry

    Since when did USADA have authority over WADA, UCI and ASO ??
    The only authority who can strip anybody of titles is the UCI (and ASO in the case of the TdF)

    USADA- get back in your box and show us the irrefutable proof.

  • Stephen Mills

    Is it true that Armstrong, Bruyneel, Verbruggen and McQuaid are desperately searching for the Ecuadorian Embassy?

  • piskian

    I think only the UCI has the power to do this,so probably best to withhold the squawking.
    Also,have a think about it.When was the most exciting period of cycleracing?That’s right,when everyone was on anabolic steroids.Legalise it all,and devil take the hindmost….

  • Mike

    The only shame about this whole sorry tale is that he will walk away with all the millions he made from fooling/cheating a gullable public and sponsors.

    Also, by walking away and not facing up to the charges, he will give all the fanboys an excuse to insist he is still the messiah. We all know now he was just a very naughty boy

  • Howard Topham

    USADA should be forced to name the witnesses and publish the ‘evidence’ If the witnesses are all cheats how can they be believed. If they allocate the 7 wins to other riders how far will they have to go down the GC to find a clean winner?

    I agree with Lance Armstrong it is a witch hunt with nothing but hearsay evidence. How do USADA have the authority to strip titles and where does a first ever lifetime ban come from. I AM IN FAVOUR OF A LIFETIME BAN FOR CONVICTED DRUG CHEATS. Why have previous convicted cheats only recieved minimal bans.

  • Colnago dave

    A terrible day for cycling, you wonder if LA knew that by throwing in the towel this would happen and it will force the UCI’s hand. I would be interested in how legal the USADA decision is as they are only an American based agency and I would suspect have no authority to strip him of his titles other than in the American states.

    THe TDF has yet to react and contirm that they recognise this decision or even accept it,

    Come on UCI come out of ther closet on this one as my reading is that by it;s decision the USADA is confirming complicity by the UCI etc in covering up the alleged positive results

  • Gareth Rees

    Can someone answer this for me I thought only the national governing body or uci can hand out bans & strip the person of his title eg david millar & alberto contador

    So i had thought this ruling by the usada goes out of their jurisdiction an example of why i thought this is on the wikipedia page for usada under world anti-doping code.

    So how can the USADA make this ruling?

  • Rouleur

    Lance was the best of an era where the first 20 finishers in any grand tour were at it. How he was never caught is a mystery, when so many of his fellow riders were. As they were all at it you could say it was a level playing field. Just as there may be a level field now, as everyone is clean we brits bob up to the top of the pile.

  • seumas leahy

    I do no