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Lance Armstrong settles $10 million Tour de France bonus case

Disgraced cyclist also apologises to insurance company involved

Lance Armstrong has settled a $10 million legal action relating to bonuses he received for three of the seven editions of the Tour de France he won between 1999 and 2005.

The disgraced cyclist, who was stripped of those victories in 2012, has also apologised to the insurance company concerned, SCA Promotions.

The insurer had initially withheld payment of bonuses as allegations began to surface that Armstrong was cheating.

But in 2006, it reached an out-of-court settlement with him and Tailwind Sports, management company of the US Postal Service team, which resulted in it paying $7.5 million plus $2.5 million costs.

After Armstrong’s confession in 2013, SCA sought to have that decision reversed.

While the arbitration panel that heard the original case had no powers to do that, in February this year it ordered him to pay the company $10 million – effectively bringing about the same result.

Armstrong did not disclose how much he had paid to SCA, reports BBC Sport, but he said: “I'm pleased to have this matter behind me and I look forward to moving on.”

He added: "I do wish to apologise to SCA, and its chief executive Bob Hamman, for any misconduct on my part in connection with our dispute and the resulting arbitration."

In recent days Armstrong has however been successful in limiting the number of questions lawyers acting on behalf of former team mate Floyd Landis can ask him regarding his doping.

Landis brought a ‘whistleblower’ action in 2010 under the False Claims Act alleging misuse of federal funds in the form of sponsorship money from US Postal.

That action was later joined by the US Department of Justice and could cost Armstrong up to $100 million if it goes against him.

According to USA Today, in July attorneys acting for Landis sent their counterparts in the Armstrong camp a 40-page document which among other things asked him to state all doping methods he used in every race he rode in from 1998 to 2004.

Armstrong’s lawyers described the request as “abusive, unreasonable and oppressive” and pointed out that he had already confessed.

Last week, U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper determined that Landis “shall instead narrow this list of requests to a maximum of 50.”

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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