Lance Armstrong says that the news of Chris Froome’s adverse analytical finding for Salbutamol is not being accurately reported by many media outlets, but accepts that he himself must take much of the blame for that.
Froome had twice the permitted limit of the anti-asthma drug when tested at the Vuelta a Espana in September. The drug is not banned outright, so if he can somehow prove he kept to the permitted dosage, he will avoid a ban and being stripped of his victory in that race.
A number of reports on the matter have of course lacked nuance and Independent.ie reports that while speaking on his podcast, Armstrong accepted responsibility for shaping the current perception of cycling.
"I am trying to accept some responsibility here because I have tainted the whole equation,” he said. “I read a story in the New York Times that was so harsh on Froome and the sport. You don't get an accurate depiction of this situation by reading that.
"This is so easy for the press to go after cycling and some of the bullshit I have read on this story has been so harsh. Reading that New York Times story, you would have thought Froome had a gallon of EPO for breakfast and that is not accurate and not fair to him."
He described cycling as “the sporting world's doormat” and concluded: “I have to take a lot of blame for that."
Armstrong then went on to suggest that the reaction to Froome’s test result was why it should have remained secret.
"He should be allowed due process to explain what happened here and he could be completely exonerated, but he is tarnished forever. Damage is done.
"This investigation could go on for months. Come next July, riding around France, it's going to be a nightmare.
"I don't know why this has been leaked to the media. Whoever leaked this had to remain anonymous and this happens a lot in our sport. It's frustrating."