In an effort to try to ameliorate the fact that France hasn’t seen a Tour de France victory in over 20 years, the French daily sports journal, L’Equipe reported the premature results of the 2004 re-testing of Lance Armstrong’s urine samples from the 1999 Tour (Lance’s first of seven victories). L’Equipe reported that the samples had been re-tested and showed evidence of containing the endurance-boosting hormone, EPO. The tests they reported on were done by (. . . don’t be too shocked now) the French anti-doping lab, LNDD. Lance Armstrong has repeatedly denied using any banned substances.
The International Cycling Union (ICU) hired a lawyer to investigate the claims as well as the leak of the information. He reported the results of his findings today. In his conclusions, the lawyer stated that his report:
“exonerates Lance Armstrong completely with respect to alleged use of doping in the 1999 Tour de France.”
Of course, the French agencies responsible for the testing, evaluating and publishing of the premature information are all crying foul.
If you can’t win with effort, determination and heart, there’s always false accusations and the destruction of you competitor’s reputation, I guess.
At least France’s cycling record is substantially better than their military record – 0–for-many.
See the article here.