Armstrong drops fight against doping charges

Discussion in 'Odds & Ends' started by Bartelby, Aug 23, 2012.

  1. adventure

    adventure Banned

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    No, he entered a mountain bike race.
     
  2. adventure

    adventure Banned

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    He could've argued his case, but he said he was tired of fighting the charges.
     
  3. adventure

    adventure Banned

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    Lance would be facing the possibility of ten eyewitnesses testifying against him.

    It doesn't matter really, the first and second runner ups are also dopers. The sport of cycling has been completely destroyed.
     
  4. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    You wanna try that again?
     
  5. Sentinel

    Sentinel Bionic Poster

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    What is the USADA's benefit in implicating LA ? Does it have to do with government grants as one other post suggested?
     
  6. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    Now Tygart is saying that if Armstrong is a good boy and cooperates, they may still let him keep most of his Tours, as they will respect the statue of limitations. He says they would have done so if he had come in and "been truthful." Interesting how the statue of limitations can be turned on or off at will.

    http://www.velonation.com/News/ID/1...Armstrongs-lifetime-ban-if-he-cooperates.aspx

    [...]
    Tygart has said that Armstrong was given the opportunity to meet with USADA, but refused. He says now that had he done so, he could have held onto five of his seven Tour titles.

    If Armstrong had “come in and been truthful, then the evidence might have been that the statute (of limitations) should apply, that would have been fine by us,” he said. Normally the statute of limitations is eight years but when an ongoing cover-up is involved, that can be waived under USADA rules. The precedent for this was set earlier this year in the doping case of Eddy Hellebuyuck, a track and field athlete.
    [...]
    “Of course, this is still possible and we always remain open, because while the truth hurts, ultimately, from what we have seen in these types of cases, acknowledging the truth is the best way forward.”
    [...]
    Meanwhile the Australian official and UCI arbitration tribunal member Phill Bates has criticised USADA. “If USADA believes Armstrong has a case to answer, the ultimate judge should be the UCI, not a publicity-seeking chief executive hellbent on a witch-hunt to chop down the tallest poppy in our sport.”
     
  7. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Tygart has no power to do anything and LA has already declined to defend himself in full knowledge of the consequences.
     
  8. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    Heh, looks like Plan A didn't work for USADA so now it's time to negotiate.
    Natch. USADA is a small company with a measly $10mil budget. Imagine if they were able to catch the White Whale, Lance Armstrong. That would be quite an accomplishment if they did that. That would earn their keep and make it much harder for a politician to cut their budget.

    Also, they could then have a better chance to market themselves to one of the major sports leagues for example. And that would at minimum double their budget. A good pitch from them would be "If any leagues would like a clean sport, hire us."
    And if that didn't work, they could always toss around innuendo: "We are saddened that no organizational bodies are interested in running a clean sport."
     
  9. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    I have no time to read the whole thread and no doubt these points have been made already, but they bear repeating:

    1) No matter what you think about Armstrong and this particular case, you need to think harder if the USADA's behavior doesn't give you at least a slight pause.
    2) The weasel language used by the USADA in their June letter was meant to do exactly what it's supposed to do.
    3) The imminent testimony of George Hincapie, Armstrong's (formerly) trusted colleague, is almost certainly the last straw that broke Lance's back.

    Now on a more personal note, my take is that Armstrong most likely doped, yet at the same time I would certainly ask for more than mere anecdotal/hearsay evidence to justify stripping an athlete of his lifetime's worth of achievements. Does the USADA really think making an example out of Armstrong will fool anyone but the most gullible observer? Please. If drug testing is a farce, the whole doping adjudication process is a tragegy-cum-farce-cum-freak show, as it involves the most eye-rolling acrobatics imaginable.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2012
  10. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Eyewitness testimony is not heresay.
     
  11. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    I noticed that too. It seems the "crime" is quite flexible. It can be what you want it to be. Apparently, their "evidence" is only good for repealing 2 titles, but it can be stretched to 7 if they want to.

    Whole thing smells of corruption.
     
  12. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    I meant to say anecdotal/hearsay evidence. Anyway my point was that physical evidence should be required before doing something so drastic, though even this isn't so foolproof. (See the Contador case, where even the CAS themselves admitted that his intake of clenbuterol was negligible but proceeded to ban him anyway.)
     
  13. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    To me it sounds almost like a last ditch attempt to lure Armstrong to "come in". The last thiing Tygart wants is for the case to be out of his hands and into the hands of the UCI or the TAS. He wants to keep it inside his court where he can control it. Why else would he be saying now that they would have applied the statue of limitations if Armstrong "had come in and been truthful," and that this is still possible because "we always remain open" and so on. Probably because he fears that the UCI and TAS won't dismiss the statue of limitations, among other things. In any case, it's a remarkable softening of tone.
     
  14. fundrazer

    fundrazer Hall of Fame

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    Why would they want the corrupt UCI to handle things? Nobody bothers reading any of the articles I've been posting I guess....

    Months ago the UCI said they would leave this all to USADA, but now that things are looking dire for Lance, he has his friends in high places at UCI try to bail him out. Remember, Pat McQuack is on Armstrong's payroll after Lance's $125,0000 "donation" to the UCI.
     
  15. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    There is no such thing as physical evidence from a legal point of view.

    There is only expert opinion about physical evidence and expert opinion is an exception to the heresay rule.

    The gold standard is always a confession and the next best is eyewitness testimony which is neither anecdotal nor heresay.



     
  16. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    The whole adjudication system is corrupt. You seem to think one of these agencies can be trusted to do the right thing.
     
  17. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    These agencies were set up because sporting bodies refused by and large to initiate tough doping controls.

    The guy is guilty because he didn't mount a defence. You should be complaining about Armstrong's cowardice.
     
  18. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    Um, you seem quite fixated on the legalese of it all. I wasn't speaking as to the legal aspect of the case, but rather giving my own personal opinion, hence the "personal note" qualifier.

    I insist on physical evidence because the whole point of PED testing is to gather and assess said evidence (yeah, and to keep the sport clean, or whatever facade they like to put on).

    That only justifies their existence, not their methods.

    It's become more likely in the minds of many that he's guilty. Nothing more or less.

    He knew he wasn't gonna get a fair hearing, so I think I'll cut the guy some slack. thanks.
     
  19. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    There were three cases with physical evidence that USADA presented to Armstrong.

    Armstrong is a coward for not defending himself in public.
     
  20. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    You can keep saying he's a coward, but it won't make it true.
     
  21. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    It is when there's no punishment for perjury.
     
  22. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Heresay evidence is usually not admissable.

    Perjury is usually untruthful eyewitness testimony.



     
  23. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    That's because its an opinion based on the true fact that he wouldn't defend himself.



     
  24. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    Look, the USADA has yet to release the details to the public. Given the noncommittal language of their June letter, forgive me for thinking they probably don't have the physical evidence to nail Armstrong with.

    You're free to characterize him as a coward. Just don't expect everyone else to share your opinion. Seriously, you're almost coaxing me into liking the guy.
     
  25. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Come off it, you already love the guy.

    My opinion was only formed when he refused to defend himself with a lame excuse about being tired.

    He's been judged fairly and he can't complain.
     
  26. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    Au contraire, the only guy I love is myself.

    Maybe that didn't come out right. Anyway trust me, I have no strong feelings about the guy. What I really object to is the USADA's self-serving campaign against him (not to mention countless others) under a veneer of righteousness.

    That's fine. I just feel differently.

    I would say that going from most likely guilty to guilty is hardly a fair judgment. But yes, he knew what he was getting into.
     
  27. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    Thank you for admitting this, it's all I needed because now we know your opinion is clearly biased. I wanted to call you out on it much earlier, but glad to see I didn't have to.
     
  28. jonnythan

    jonnythan Professional

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    Well your opinion is just that. It's an opinion.

    You keep presenting it as a fact.
     
  29. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    Armstrong did defend himself in a real court of law. Just in February this year federal prosecutors dropped a two-year investigation, with no charges against him.

    From a news report at the time:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/ot...oping-investigation-into-Lance-Armstrong.html

    The probe [was] anchored in Los Angeles where a grand jury was presented evidence by federal prosecutors and heard testimony from Armstrong's former teammates and associates
    […]
    Investigators looked at whether a doping program was established for Armstrong's team while they received government sponsorship from the US Postal Service. They also examined whether Armstrong encouraged or facilitated doping on the team.


    USADA is a private agency, not a court of law. They could try to keep to their mission and concentrate on the here and now, keeping an eye on the thousands of athletes now practicing sports in the US. They prefer the then and there where the big flashy fish are. A private agency with these goals, where the CEO, the Judge and the Prosecutor are one and the same person, is no place to defend yourself. It’s worse, in fact, than the worse kangaroo court, and so it is not at all surprising LA refused to submit to their process. No shame in that whatsoever. But he did defend himself succesfully in a real court of law, to the point where the prosecutors had to drop the case, because whatever the USADA was supplying them was useless to them.

    It's highly amusing that the Usada is now changing its tune and suggesting they will respect the statue of limitations and let him keep most of his titles if he only comes to their lap and fesses up (see post 256) Why weren't they saying that before? It's pretty pathetic.
     
  30. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Opinions are always biased if by that you mean subjective. Do you really think you have objective opinions? You need to go back to school and redo English.



     
  31. tennismonkey

    tennismonkey Semi-Pro

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  32. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    An athlete these days is subject to WADA and USADA and these are the bodies that he voluntarily submitted to, among others, in order to compete as an athlete.

    Armstrong challenged these bodies in court and failed so he is subject to their rulings.

    These bodies don't deprive anyone of life or liberty so they don't have to meet criminal law standards.

    Armstrong is not a criminal, but he is a doper.



     
  33. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    Lance Armstrong doping campaign exposes USADA’s hypocrisy

    by Sally Jenkins
    The Washington Post
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/sport...8a13ca-ee22-11e1-afd6-f55f84bc0c41_story.html

    A federal judge wrote last week, “USADA’s conduct raises serious questions about whether its real interest in charging Armstrong is to combat doping, or if it is acting according to less noble motives.” You don’t say. Then when is a judge, or better yet Congress, going to do something about it?

    Quite independently of Lance, with whom I wrote two books, for a long, long time I’ve had serious doubts about the motives, efficiency and wisdom of these “doping” investigations. In the Balco affair, all the wrong people were prosecuted. It’s the only so-called drug investigation in which the manufacturers and the distributors were given plea deals in order to throw the book at the users. What that told us was that it was big-game hunting, not justice. It was careerist investigators trying to put athletes’ antlers on their walls. Meanwhile, the Fourth Amendment became a muddy, stomped-on, kicked-aside doormat.

    So forget Lance. I have so many problems with USADA, the World Anti-Doping Agency and the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) — which is supposed to be where athletes can appeal, only they never, ever win — that it’s hard to know where to begin. American athletes have lost 58 of 60 cases before the CAS. Would you want to go before that court?

    Anyone who thinks an athlete has a fair shot in front of CAS should review the Alberto Contador case. Contador was found to have a minuscule, insignificant amount of clenbuterol in his urine during the 2010 Tour de France. After hearing 4,000 pages of testimony and debate, CAS acknowledged that the substance was too small to have been performance-enhancing and that its ingestion was almost certainly unintentional.

    Therefore he was guilty. He received a two-year ban.

    CAS’s rationale? “There is no reason to exonerate the athlete so the ban is two years,” one member of the panel said.

    Would you want to go before that court?

    The decision was so appalling that even the Tour runner-up, Andy Schleck of Luxembourg, couldn’t swallow it and refused to accept the title of winner. “There is no reason to be happy now,” Schleck said. “First of all, I felt bad for Alberto. I always believed in his innocence. . . . I battled with Contador in that race and I lost.”

    The former prime minister of Spain, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, had openly declared his belief that Contador was innocent. When the CAS ruling came down, Zapatero expressed “bewilderment” and suggested it was so irrational it gave “sufficient reasons to open a debate about their fairness.”

    The response of WADA President John Fahey? A rant in which he suggested that Contador was given a two-year ban instead of one because Zapatero had dared to open his mouth. Let me repeat: The president of WADA actually suggested publicly that an athlete’s penalty was made harsher because his prime minister had the nerve to challenge WADA’s authority.

    Again, would you want to go before that court?

    When are people going to grow sick enough of these astonishing overreaches and abuses to do something about it? As my friend Tommy Craggs has written for Deadspin, WADA and USADA have become “a gang of moralizing cranks . . . and it is beyond me why an organization that wants to ban caffeine again hasn’t yet gotten laughed out of polite conversation.”

    You can put me down on that side of the argument. You can also put me down on the side of professional basketball player Diana Taurasi, who has called the international drug testing bureaucracy “one of the most unfair processes you can be put through,” and attorney Howard Jacobs, who makes his living going before CAS. He told USA Today, “A lot of times athletes are getting run over in the quest for clean sport.”

    How does an agency that is supposed to regulate drug testing strip a guy of seven titles without a single positive drug test? Whether Armstrong is innocent or guilty, that question should give all of us pause. How is it that an American agency can decide to invalidate somebody’s results achieved in Europe, in a sport it doesn’t control? Better question, how is it that an American taxpayer-funded organization can participate in an adjudication system in which you get a two-year ban because “there is no reason to exonerate” you? At what point is such an organization shut down and defunded?

    In his decision last week, U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks declined to intervene in USADA’s case against Armstrong because to do so would “turn federal judges into referees for a game in which they have no place, and about which they know little.” But in the next breath Sparks expressed an opinion on certain matters he does know about. “The deficiency of USADA’s charging document is of serious constitutional concern,” he wrote. “Indeed, but for two facts, the court might be inclined to find USADA’s charging letter was a violation of due process and to enjoin USADA from proceeding thereunder.” Among other things, he was disturbed by USADA’s “apparent single-minded determination” to go after Armstrong and force him before CAS.

    All of which I find far more worrisome than the question of whether he may have transfused his own blood in trying to climb a mountain on a bike. It wasn’t a judge’s job to intervene with USADA. But it most certainly would seem to be the job of Congress. The WADA-USADA system is simply incompatible with the U.S. legal system.
     
  34. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    That is the problem. If you want to be a sportsman, you have to "voluntarily" submit to this. It is voluntary only in theory, as there is really no other option. It is a bogus choice, like the "choice" of factory workers in the past to work in dangerous and abusive conditions, or "choose" to not work.
     
  35. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    What is the problem? The athletes cheating in such high numbers is what has lead to this. Trying to use Armstrong as a martyr is a joke if youre gonna use him as the example of how athletes arent given the benefit of the doubt anymore.
     
  36. fundrazer

    fundrazer Hall of Fame

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    Benhur, that article doesn't even get all of the facts straight. Contador was banned on the basis that he is responsible for the substances entering his body. And while it was agreed that it was unlikely for him to willingly ingest clenbuterol, his "contaminated steak" defense was equally unlikely.

    Still on the Contador issue, that article seems totally ignorant regarding certain nations' willingness to protect their athletes from doping allegations, even when some of these athletes are guilty. Spain's VP has no business talking about whether Contador should have been banned or not. If you're not familiar with Alejandro Valverde's story, I'd recommend reading up on that as well.
     
  37. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    I'm not expressing my opinion, you were. I was just pointing out the fact that the rationale from all your previous posts have become valueless.
     
  38. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    The majority of sentences handed out in the justice system do not deprive anyone of life or liberty. They involve merely retribution or redressing of wrongs, but the proceedings are still subject to the rules of the justice system. A body charged with administering justice has to adhere to some pre-established procedural rules, and the enforcement of those rules has to be done by an entity that is separate from the prosecution, otherwise abuse is guaranteed. The procedures followed by these agencies are not very different from what you see in the Inquisition courts of the past, even if they are not allowed to imprison or kill anyone (thank God).

    Now, the rule of law itself seems to be deteriorating fast, as Paul Craig Roberts notes in his column today. http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/

    It’s also a concern that the prison system is already being privatized to a great extent, so maybe the next step will be the privatization of the justice system itself, in which case the current behavior of these agencies would be a taste of things to come. It's already amazing that financial criminals are left alone while sportsmen are obsessively persecuted for things going back many years.
    But you have to be out of your mind to think these agencies operate with any kind of fairness.
     
  39. Underhand

    Underhand Legend

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    I WANT TO BELIEVE
    THE TRUTH lS OUT THERE
    TRUST NO ONE
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2012
  40. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    From the information that's been brought to public attention due to LA's notoriety, I think the reasonable conclusion is that LA has been using doping and evasion procedures for at least 14 years. Given that other top cyclists have also been investigated and stripped of their titles, then it doesn't seem to me that the investigation of LA was unfair.

    The USADA's investigation, findings, and actions haven't martyed LA. Rather, they've exposed him as a doper, a liar, and a hypocrite. This part of the affair is a done deal imo.

    LA's current net worth is estimated at around $125 million. A recent interview (and mountain bike race) suggests that he's doing just fine. I have to suppose that every day is pretty much a good day when you're that rich and reasonably healthy.

    What's the message from all this LA stuff? I'm just curious regarding speculations about the future of doping and evasion procedures in cyling, etc.?
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2012
  41. chrischris

    chrischris Hall of Fame

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    Would you use the same reasoning for other dishonest actions?

    In your view are for example shoplifting or counterfeit products acceptable due to the fact they are common?
     
  42. adventure

    adventure Banned

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    The credibility of cycling has been utterly destroyed.

    Ironically, PED's are just as big of a problem in amateur athletics and in other pro sports, but cycling's image in particular has been completely ruined.

    Lance is a sociopath: he has no conception of right and wrong. After being banned from competitive cycling, he entered a mountain bike race the same day. He just doesn't care.

     
  43. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    I think you might be misunderstanding what volleygirl wrote.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2012
  44. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    I'd agree with this, but they don't do sport out of necessity and they all agree in principle that drugs should not be in sport.

    So how do you get rid of drugs in sport without a draconian regime?

    The Armstrong affairs show you can't unless WADA/USADA exists.



     
  45. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    No, all you have is a different opinion stemming from your interpretation of the facts and law, even if your understanding of law is deficient.



     
  46. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    This is not an issue in civil law.

    Every sport from the beginning of time has been allowed to regulate itself.

    You can hit people on a sporting field and they might take you before a tribunal but the cops usually don't jump onto the football field to stop a fight.

    If you hit someone in the stands they stop you.

    Sports have always held delegated administrative power, recognised by the courts, for the conduct of their own affairs.

    If their conduct is excessive or beyond their powers they can be challenged in court.

    These super drug tribunals are simply another instance of self-regulation and they operate in accordance with strictly regulated procedures, because if they don't their judgements will be thrown out in court.



     
  47. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    So, in one post you claim to have superior knowledge of these matters in law, then in your very next post you claim this is not an issue of law. Contradict yourself much?
    I almost didn't catch it because normally people don't double or triple post like you have. I was wondering about that, then I saw the conflicts of your opinions and suppositions and I guess you were trying to hide them by not putting them together.
    Since you previously revealed your bias, it's been showing more and more, while your rationale has become less and less. See below, the cat's out of the bag

    As if WADA/USADA are the only effective drug testing administrations in the world.
    So, not only are you bringing the Armstrong hate, but you're also a proponent of a "regime" that you yourself characterize as draconian.

    Obviously, there are plenty of other, far more effective drug testing agencies than USADA/WADA that respect due process, do not rely on hearsay and are not led by Captain Ahab, trying to catch his white whale. But you don't see that because you're all about your pre-judgements.
     
  48. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    I was looking for comments by the 3 greatest cyclists still alive (aside from Arsmstrong). I suppose that would be Merckx, Hinault and Indurain. This is what I found.

    Merckx said:
    Lance Armstrong is very disappointed and is facing an unfair trial. At a certain point, a person has had enough. Lance was very correct during his career. What more can he do? All the controls he passed, more than 500 since the year 2000, came out negative. Either those controls are good for nothing, or Armstrong was within the rules. The whole thing is based on witnesses testimony. It’s profoundly unjust. I haven’t spoken with Lance recently, but I know he is very disappointed. I can’t understand this viciousness, making such a big deal out of someone who never tested positive. It’s always cycling they’re after. It’s sickening.

    Indurain said:
    “Until a competent authority decides otherwise, Armstrong should keep his titles.” Indurain also said that Usada’s persecution of Armstrong is “unscrupulous.”

    Hinault said he doesn’t give a hoot about any of this.
     
  49. fundrazer

    fundrazer Hall of Fame

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    Great, but what do their comments have to do with anything? I'd also have you know that Axel Merckx, Eddy's son, works with the Bontrager-Livestrong team. It would probably go against their best interest to say anything negative about Lance.

    Now let me drop a name. Swedish cyclist Gustav Larson tweeted about it basically saying there was no doubt in the professional peloton that Lance was a doper. Now what does me saying that in this thread accomplish, not anything really...
     
  50. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Oct 1, 2005
    Messages:
    35,636
    It is an issue of human rights. That is why the federal judge said it will not pass muster in a court of law and expressed skepticism.

    In another case, European courts ruled for the tennis player.
     

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