October 10, 2012
Armstrong part of most 'successful doping program sport has ever seen'
With friends and teammates like this, who needs enemies? Nearly a dozen of Lance Armstrong's former bicycling pals threw the former Tour de France champ under the spokes and detailed “the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen," according to the US Anti-Doping Agency. The agency said it'll release new details later today, explaining Armstrong's permanent ban from competitive cycling. The documents is expected to include testimony from 11 of Armstrong's former teammates. USADA CEO Travis Tygart said today's document dump would include more than 1,000 pages of damning evidence.He listed 11 of Armstrong’s former USPS teammates, including George Hincapie, Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton, as among those who sang like canaries against the disgraced, seven-time Tour de France champ. "The riders who participated in the USPS Team doping conspiracy and truthfully assisted have been courageous in making the choice to stop perpetuating the sporting fraud, and they have suffered greatly," Tygart said. "In some part, it would have been easier for them if it all would just go away; however, they love the sport, and they want to help young athletes have hope that they are not put in the position they were — to face the reality that in order to climb to the heights of their sport they had to sink to the depths of dangerous cheating." This "Reasoned Decision" on Armstrong is being delivered to the Union Cycliste International (UCI), the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), and the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), according to Tygart. WADA has already said it fully supports the USADA's findings. “We’ve got no problem with the process they have followed,” WADA general director David Howman said. “We’ve just got to be patient and be quiet until the decision comes to hand.” Other cyclists named in the news release were Frankie Andreu, Michael Barry, Tom Danielson, Levi Leiphimer, Stephen Swart, Christian Vande Velde, Jonathan Vaughters and David Zabriskie. In a letter to USADA attorneys sent Tuesday, Armstrong’s attorney dismissed any evidence provided by Landis and Hamilton, calling them “serial perjurers and have told diametrically contradictory stories under oath.” Hincapie’s role in the investigation could be more damaging, as he was one of Armstrong’s closest and most loyal teammates through the years. “I have personally talked with and heard these athletes’ stories and firmly believe that, collectively, these athletes, if forgiven and embraced, have a chance to leave a legacy far greater for the good of the sport than anything they ever did on a bike,” Tygart said. He said all the facts in the Armstrong case and the cases of six other riders targeted in USADA’s investigation will be made available on the agency’s website later Wednesday. Two other players in the Postal team’s circle, Dr. Michele Ferrari and Dr. Garcia del Moral, also received lifetime as part of the case. Three other members of the USPS Team will take their cases to arbitration. They are team director Johan Bruyneel, team doctor Pedro Celaya and team trainer Jose “Pepe” Marti. http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/more_sports/usada_armstrong_part_ever_most_successful_EpbSPR6AkbFf0vgrKrm3LM