June 20, 2006
Armstrong: "I'll watch it on TV"
Seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong says he'll almost certainly miss the 2006 Tour because of a busy schedule in the U.S.
Armstrong says there's a “remote chance” he might be there for the final weekend (presumably if one of his Discovery Channel riders is in yellow), but that his preparations for the ESPN “Espy” broadcast airing July 16 will fill the Tour's middle week.
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The real reason he’s missing the Tour is that he’d rather waste time calling for Mr. Pound’s head, than demanding a counter-analysis at another accredited lab to help clear up L’Affaire Armstrong for good.
According to the official WADA statement (pg. 9) and the Vrijman report (pg. 57), “There may be appropriately stored residue still available for DNA and other further analysis.” This implied offer goes back as far as September 2005, when the French minister of sport, Dominique Laurent, indicated that Mr. Armstrong could still clear his name because urine samples from the 1999 Tour de France remain available for possible re-testing.
In doing so, let’s not allow Mr. Armstrong, under guise of advancing the Olympic movement, to take revenge against the rules of fair play, the tests, and the testers.
How do we advance the Olympic spirit if we rail against the most reliable tests we have? How do we maintain a level playing field if we allow athletes to shift their doping practices to contemporaneously undetectable means such as EPO before 2000, hormones and blood doping today, or potential genetic manipulation in the future? Furthermore, where under the UCI, WADA, or Olympic charters or the UN charter for that matter are athletes or anyone else allowed to defraud the public in secret?
I think Mr. Armstrong protests too much. The UCI has already disciplined its employee most directly responsible for linking his name to his test results, and published a 130-page report that “completely exonerates” him. Yet the recriminations go on.
In response, we the people can make and enhance the rules. Nowadays, common drug and alcohol violations can lead to arrest and one or more tests under implied consent law. Refusal to take a test is admissible as evidence. Therefore, Mr. Armstrong, you say you didn’t dope, here’s your chance to prove it!
Posted by: Rydr1 at Jun 21, 2006 1:56:41 AM
Give all us (Americans) a break and give it a rest. Your whining sounds like alot of other people, including most so called liberals, who believe everything American is bad and everything European is good. I'm proud of Lance Armstrong and his phenomenal achievements in cycling. I'm thrilled he's an American.I'm thrilled to be an American. I doubt you are one so I guess I should try to understand your position hoping that SOMEDAY maybe a Frenchman will once again win the Tour. In the meantime, I guess you'll just have to believe that the fox was right and the grapes he couldn't reach were sour anyway.
Posted by: Donald H Kaufman at Jun 21, 2006 11:26:04 AM
Curious why anyone cares whether Armstrong is there anyway. It's seems the media needs his presence to validate the Tour or something. Like they are just not quite ready to believe he doesn't care for cycling anymore. We have upon us a Tour that has the potential to be the best one in over 7 years. 3 Americans have podium potential. It would be better if the media and fans would focus on that rather than whether Armstrong would rather have a beer than ride his bike.
Posted by: Bob at Jun 23, 2006 3:54:34 PM
The best tour in over 7 years!? It appears that will not be the case. The field realized it could be anyones race this year so many have gone to the extreme of finding a competetive edge on the other side of the law. The class and respect that Lance Armstrong brought to the tour appears to be fading. It is sad to see it go this way.
I am not American and neither are many of those implicated in this new scandal. Now who will they blame?
Posted by: Tom at Jun 30, 2006 1:43:10 PM