Posted November 18, 2013

Lance Armstrong claims UCI president helped with cover up

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Lance Armstrong was stripped of his 7 Tour de France titles earlier this year by the US Anti-Doping Agency. (Getty Images)

Lance Armstrong was stripped of his 7 Tour de France titles earlier this year by the US Anti-Doping Agency. (Getty Images)

Lance Armstrong says that International Cycling Union president Hein Verbruggen helped cover up the cyclist’s doping during the 1999 Tour de France.

The Associated Press reports that Armstrong told Great Britain’s Daily Mail that Verbruggen helped him cover up a positive test during his ’99 Tour win in an effort to save the sport from embarrassment:

“The real problem was, the sport was on life support,” Armstrong said in the article. “And Hein just said, ‘This is a real problem for me; this is the knockout punch for our sport … so we’ve got to come up with something.’”

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Armstrong has previously admitted to covering up a failed drug test during the 1999 Tour de France by falsifying a prescription for corticosteroids, but he had never before implicated the UCI or Verbruggen.

Verbruggen is still listed by the UCI as an honorary president, but the cycling governing body has hired an outside investigator to look into collusion between those caught doping and top UCI executives. Armstrong has said he will cooperate fully with the investigation.

The IOC, where Verbuggen now serves as chairman of the Olympic Broadcasting Service, released a statement on Monday questioning the accusations:

“It is hard to give any credibility to the claims of a cyclist who appears to have misled the world for decades.”

“That said, the UCI is currently working on plans to investigate the matter more thoroughly and we await proper considered outcomes,”

 


18 comments
BicyclistsBelongInTheTrafficLane
BicyclistsBelongInTheTrafficLane

What's pathetic is anyone who still can't tell when Armstrong is lying and when he's honest.  About this, he's clearly being truthful.  The rumors about Verbruggen's involvement have been around as long as the rumors about Armstrong's failed test and cover-up itself.  It make sense.  I'm glad he's finally telling the truth.

The real problem is having the same organization, the UCI, be responsible for both marketing and policing the sport.  That just can't work.

nathan l
nathan l

So Lance is done suing everybody and now he admits he cheated? What makes this clown think anybody (besides Buzz Bissinger) is dumb enough to believe anything he has to say these days?

RaidLakeDodge
RaidLakeDodge

Who cares if he had help.  The bottom line is that he cheated.  No cheating, then there would not have been a cover-up to begin with

espnrefugee0218
espnrefugee0218

Bud Selig knew that Mark Mcgwire and Sammy Sosa were juiced up.  But that home run race season saved baseball.  

Just like Lance Armstrong saved cycling...i guess the point is when theres money to be made and popularity to gain dont expect people at the top to try and tear it down on morals


JohnGelhard
JohnGelhard

So Armstrong thinks he was bigger than the sport itself?  A sport that was around for decades before his participation, with great champions, like Merckx and Hinault.  His dismissal would trump all that? 

AhyNonimous
AhyNonimous

He should just go away at this point, but his ego won't let him.  Trying to put your cheating and lying in some kind of context makes you look pathetic, Lance. 

NoQNoSuperBowl
NoQNoSuperBowl

Makes sense. But I wouldn't believe Lance Armstrong if he told me the sun comes up in the east.

Voiceover310
Voiceover310

@espnrefugee0218 Saved baseball? Look at the attendance/ratings numbers from the season prior to the home run race. They are near identical to the numbers from the previous season. There wasn't any dramatic increase in revenues the season after either. You need to retire your troll costume, espn boards have been dead for months now. Let it go, IT'S OVER

inthepresent
inthepresent

@JohnGelhard

Hinault last won in '85

Merckx last won in '74 

i think the point is fairly obvious. 

that is not to say that what he did is in any way justified. 

StephenCurtis
StephenCurtis

@JohnGelhard he is right though. Cycling is no where near the popularity it was when those guys where winning. armstrong made it more popular in the us. Cycling needed stars and armstrong was one of the biggest. Cycling today is no where near where it was when armstrong was racing either. its a pretty dead sport even in europe,.

JohnGelhard
JohnGelhard

@StephenCurtis @JohnGelhard If you're a late comer to cycling, you could make that argument.  Greg Lemond was the first American to win the Tour.  He also came back from a life threatening experience.  He was shot by his brother n law in a hunting accident.  The only reason he lived was a helicopter happened to be flying by and ended up airlifting Lemond to a hospital.  He made up a 50 second deficit on the last day of the tour in a short time trial to win.  Cycling didn't need Armstrong or a bunch of trendy fans.