Don’t be a Dope…
It was one of the most remarkable stories in sports history. Lance Armstrong, overcoming testicular and brain cancer to win a remarkable seventh straight Tour de France. But now Armstrong seems to be in hot water again after some of his racing partners have reportedly told a grand jury that Lance used performance-enhancing drugs.
This is not the first time Armstrong has been accused of using performance-enhancing drugs. Past allegations have been wide-ranging, but never conclusive. Any claim of evidence against Armstrong could never be verified. It was Armstrong’s word against each witness, each claim. He has always emphatically denied any wrong doing and has walked away from each allegation without his popularity taking a hit.
I think Armstrong might be in some trouble this time. More witnesses are coming forward and ex-teammates seem to be backing claims of his alleged drug use.
Sparked by a federal inquiry into Armstrong’s former team US Postal Service that goes back to last year, and a recently-aired story on 60 minutes where Armstrong’s former team-mate Tyler Hamilton claimed that he had seen Armstrong use the banned blood booster erythropoietin (EPO), the evidence seems to be building against Lance.
Coupled with his denials of any use of banned substances and his assertion that he has never failed a drugs test, in the past Armstrong could site that each witness’s evidence was caused by personal animosity, a desire for financial gain, revenge, jealousy, or, in the case of Landis and now Hamilton – that both men lied for several years about their own drug-taking before coming clean.
The final dagger may be coming from Armstrong’s close friend George Hincapie. Reportedly, Hincapie, who raced with Armstrong over the past 2 decades, and is well-liked and respected in the cycling world, was called in to testify in the federal case against Armstrong.
To this point Lance has ripped apart and attacked anyone who has said anything against him. I don’t know if that would work against his close friend who Lance himself called “a stand-up guy”.
My hope is that he will just come clean and not wait for the evidence to keep building- before admitting his mistake in a TV interview or book.
I believe that after it’s all said and done, we will find out or it will be proven that Armstrong did indeed use performance enhancing drugs. It’s sad…over the years, with the news of steroids in baseball, the daily reports of athletes being arrested for drugs, DWI’s, domestic abuse, etc…we’ve been conditioned as sports fans to be disappointed in our heroes. However, in Armstrong’s case….with his storied career, his fight to beat cancer and his determination in raising hundreds of millions for cancer research, you want to believe he’s innocent….but he’s not.