Armstrong Gives up Fight against Doping Charges – Stripped of Titles

By Community | August 24, 2012

Lance Armstrong has announced he will drop his fight against drug charges bought on him by the US anti-doping agency (USADA).

As a result, Armstrong, 40, will be banned from cycling for life and will see his seven Tour de France titles stripped from him.

The American achieved the record run between 1999 and 2005, but after becoming “weary” of the “nonsense,” from the USADA, he is set to end his fight, despite maintaining his innocence.

In a statement, Armstrong said: “There comes a point in every man’s life when he has to say, ‘Enough is enough’. For me, that time is now.

“I have been dealing with claims that I cheated and had an unfair advantage in winning my seven Tours since 1999. Over the past three years, I have been subjected to a two-year federal criminal investigation followed by Travis Tygart’s unconstitutional witch hunt.

“The toll this has taken on my family and my work for our foundation and on me leads me to where I am today – finished with this nonsense.”

“The idea that athletes can be convicted today without positive A and B samples, under the same rules and procedures that apply to athletes with positive tests, perverts the system and creates a process where any begrudged ex-team-mate can open a USADA case out of spite or for personal gain or a cheating cyclist can cut a sweetheart deal for themselves. It’s an unfair approach, applied selectively, in opposition to all the rules. It’s just not right.”

Armstrong continued: “USADA cannot assert control of a professional international sport and attempt to strip my seven Tour de France titles. I know who won those seven Tours, my team-mates know who won those seven Tours, and everyone I competed against knows who won those seven Tours.

“We all raced together. For three weeks over the same roads, the same mountains, and against all the weather and elements that we had to confront. There were no shortcuts, there was no special treatment. The same courses, the same rules. The toughest event in the world where the strongest man wins.”

The USADA claim Armstrong used blood booster, erythropoietin (EPO), steroid and blood transfusions, as far back as 1996.

Travis Tygart, head of the USADA commented: “This is a heartbreaking example of how the win-at-all-costs culture of sport, if left unchecked, will overtake fair, safe and honest competition, but for clean athletes, it is a reassuring reminder that there is hope for future generations to compete on a level playing field without the use of performance-enhancing drugs.”