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Disgraced Tour winner describes himself as a 'convict of the road', forced to take performance enhancing drugs...

The ordeal of being found out for doping was ‘not worth it’ despite the effect it has had on cleaning up the sport, Lance Armstrong has said.

Speaking of the behaviour among pro racers in the years up to his eventual lifetime ban and revocation of his seven Tour de France titles, Armstrong insisted that he considered himself a ‘convict of the road’, forced to take all the enhancements available to him.

Speaking to Colorado Quarterly, Armstrong said that doping was the competitive advantage over other riders. “Of course, you always want science to be ahead of where doping would be,” he said. “But at that time, science was way, way behind.

“There was a substance, EPO, that was tremendously helpful, up to the tune of 10 percent (in enhanced performance), and just as important, it was completely undetectable. And, of course, it ran like wildfire through the peloton (professional cycling).”

Asked whether his fall from grace was ultimately worth it for the good of the sport, Armstrong replied: “That’s a great question, and one that I ask myself every day. My answer is not a popular one. My answer is that it wasn’t worth it.”

Earlier this month Armstrong gave a sworn testimonial about his years of doping as part of SCA Promotions’ attempt to recoup millions of dollars it paid him for his Tour wins.

At a hearing in Austin, Armstrong gave a sworn deposition, although a protective order prevented reporting of the testimony.

Armstrong has long fought to block SCA’s bid to recover $12 million in costs and bonuses it paid him.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

31 comments

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Nick T [950 posts] 2 years ago
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Quote:

Armstrong insisted that he considered himself a ‘convict of the road’,

Has he started riding for Rapha? Forçat de la route, indeed.

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CarlosFerreiro [111 posts] 2 years ago
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I first thought he was going to say that the cheating wasn't worth it in the end, but no, it was the sport that was in the wrong for catching him?  39

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Leviathan [2141 posts] 2 years ago
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It has cleaned up the History books, not necessarily the tour.

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Leviathan [2141 posts] 2 years ago
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It has cleaned up the History books, not necessarily the tour.

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billybob56 [12 posts] 2 years ago
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 102 how I feel about it!

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EarsoftheWolf [75 posts] 2 years ago
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Painting himself as the victim is just a further insult to the cycling community and cycling fans. I hope he lives a sad and lonely life full of regret until he just admits full responsibility for his own actions.

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seanboy [23 posts] 2 years ago
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as my late father would have said,what a prize cunt

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Derny [113 posts] 2 years ago
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Not worth it for him perhaps (what a surprise!) but the rest of us can decide for ourselves if it was worth it. I know I'll never be a fan of a bike racer, but I can still enjoy the sport, more so with that arrogant prick removed.

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gazza_d [465 posts] 2 years ago
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Playing the victim card now. Seriously Lance just F off now

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therevokid [953 posts] 2 years ago
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twat

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Whitters1986 [6 posts] 2 years ago
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Wow, I thought he was trying to portray himself as rehabilitated so that they would let him race in triathlons again?

How arrogant is he?!

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Cyclist [295 posts] 2 years ago
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This will be unpopular... However I am not bothered.

Armstrong has done a lot of good, does it make his actions towards others right? Of course not, a bully is a bully. But I have less respect for the bottless idiots like landis etc. I loved watching the tour in his era, battling with Pantani, it was ridiculous yes, but compulsive viewing. As for calling the guy a cunt, that is pathetic as he is not responsible for doping, I am not condoning his actions but let's be objective about it. He is not Stalin, Hitler or any other type of mass murderer, so let's get real it's sport.
As for the people who were bullied and ridden over well that's between them and LA. From what I know of LA the man I respect him, don't particularly like him but I definitely respect him.
On the other hand I find Walsh to be a sanctimonious t##t

I am still a LA bike rider fan. And I still see him as 7 times TdF winner.

He regrets being caught, not what he did. Just like every other human that's been caught for anything, including you, think about that before you start with your warrior. I am already LOLing at the replies to come.

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don simon [787 posts] 2 years ago
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Quote:

The ordeal of being found out for doping was ‘not worth it’ despite the effect it has had on cleaning up the sport, Lance Armstrong has said.

Poor little Lanceypoos.

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Beefy [379 posts] 2 years ago
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I have to say LA did win 7 tours, it was a level playing field because they were all doping, if you remove his wins then remove the whole peloton of his tour wins. I don't like what he did in bullying and I'm glad doping is reducing all the time be he was far from alone.

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Beefy [379 posts] 2 years ago
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I have to say LA did win 7 tours, it was a level playing field because they were all doping, if you remove his wins then remove the whole peloton of his tour wins. I don't like what he did in bullying and I'm glad doping is reducing all the time be he was far from alone.

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Quince [382 posts] 2 years ago
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I think him getting caught was probably worth it. Perhaps I'm outdated in my way of thinking, but I like to imagine truth is worth a little more than an aggressive construction of lies, deception and intimidating cover-ups.

It's generally a bit more straight-foward, at any rate.

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Beaufort [270 posts] 2 years ago
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It's a sad story that will always be in the minds of fans. He has to live with what he's done, nothing can ever change the feeling of betrayal we feel.

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WolfieSmith [1326 posts] 2 years ago
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Say what you like about Armstrong but in the end it's the classic deal with the devil at the crossroads and fascinating for that. It would make a fantastic film. Oh hang on...

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anarchy [100 posts] 2 years ago
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Lance sucks balls

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anarchy [100 posts] 2 years ago
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Lance sucks balls

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Karbon Kev [688 posts] 2 years ago
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The ordeal of being found out for doping was ‘not worth it’ despite the effect it has had on cleaning up the sport

well DUH, wasn't that very obvious? what a twat ..

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nicholassmith [92 posts] 2 years ago
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At least he's being honest about it, he could have said "Oh yeah, it's great that the sport is now cleaned up at my considerable expense" and we'd all go "well that's a load of shit!". Could have saved himself all this grief if he'd been a bit more honest earlier on.

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Simmo72 [609 posts] 2 years ago
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This is news?

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zanf [859 posts] 2 years ago
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Simmo72 wrote:

This is news?

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Wrongfoot [35 posts] 2 years ago
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No matter how many times apologists repeat the lie, it's still a lie...

they
weren't
all
doping.

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SteppenHerring [330 posts] 2 years ago
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The "level playing field" argument is not a good one. Sure, the top riders like Lance had access to the drugs and, key thing, medical support. Many young riders (who had access to the drugs but not the doctors) died in that era - heart stops in the night with blood like raspberry jam.

Sure, Lance wasn't the only one, but he hung on long after the others, denying until he was finally forced to admit the truth.

Someone pointed out that Pierre Rolland's stage-winning time up Alpe d'Huez in 2011 would've netted him 40th place on the same stage in the 2001 tour - despite the 2011 stage being much shorter. Times have changed.

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DrJDog [353 posts] 2 years ago
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Beefy wrote:

I have to say LA did win 7 tours, it was a level playing field because they were all doping, if you remove his wins then remove the whole peloton of his tour wins. I don't like what he did in bullying and I'm glad doping is reducing all the time be he was far from alone.

I'm pretty sure there is no official winner for those Tours de France.

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Joeinpoole [441 posts] 2 years ago
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Wrongfoot wrote:

No matter how many times apologists repeat the lie, it's still a lie...

they
weren't
all
doping.

It wasn't even a "level playing field" amongst those who were doping either. They didn't all have access to the chemical technology and support that LA had and they probably didn't have the bosses of the UCI in their pocket, courtesy of 'donations' of $kkk's, thus avoiding effective testing and reporting.

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joc [58 posts] 2 years ago
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i actually admire his honesty. oh the irony  11

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crazy-legs [796 posts] 2 years ago
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Sorry but I'm with "Cyclist" ^^ on this one.

LA has been made a scapegoat for an entire generation of dopers. Yes it's a bed he made himself but actually pointing all the fingers at Lance and saying "yep, all his fault" ignores the wider issues.

Watch the film Pantani - Accidental Death of a Cyclist. In there they touch on the doping issue and the telling comment is this:
"It wasn't just a couple of rotten apples - the entire apple cart was rotten."
It was a systematic abuse and it came from sponsors, managers, doctors, riders and even the media all working together. I don't think Lance ever had the UCI in his pocket, frankly I think at that time the UCI was simply a mixture of naïve and woefully incompetent - charged on the one hand with growing and promoting the sport while on the other hand attempting to keep it clean and failing miserably. They even unwittingly sanctioned the use of EPO by creating that 50% haemocrit test - basically a green light to dope up to 50% and hey, you're all alright (this was before the test for EPO). Amazing how during that time you'd find that every cyclist in the peloton had a haemocrit of 49.8%...

Lance was the gateway to a whole continent where previously (in spite of Lemond) very few people were "into" cycling in that way, certainly nowhere close to the love affair that Europe has always had with the sport. Lance changed all that so why was anyone going to attempt to bring him down? More exposure to a new audience = more sponsorship = more money all round. Everyone was in on it, Lance just happened to be a big (and very media friendly) fish in a small pond.

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