This past weekend, the French newspaper, Le Monde reported that Lance Armstrong admitted to taking performance enhancing drugs prior to his surgery to remove testicular cancer that had spread to his brain. According to the report, Armstrong admitted to this days after his surgery in October, 1996. Armstrong won the Tour de France each year from 1999–2005.
Betsy Andreu, the wife of Frankie Andreu, a cyclist who raced with Armstrong, claims she was in the room when Armstrong admitted this to his doctors. The context was his doctors’ wanting to know if he had taken any drugs that might interfere with the chemotherapy they were about to prescribe. According to Armstrong’s attorney, there were ten people in the room. Ms. Andreu appears to be the only one who heard the admission.
Armstrong’s primary physician, Dr. Craig Nichols (who administered Armstrong’s chemotherapy at Indiana University Medical Center and who is now the chair of hematology-oncology at Oregon Health and Sciences University) said:
“Lance Armstrong never admitted, suggested or indicated that he has ever taken performance-enhancing drugs. Had this been disclosed to me, I would have recorded it, or been aware of it, as a pertinent aspect of Lance Armstrong’s past medical history as I always do.”
“Had I been present at any such ‘confession,’ I would most certainly have vividly recalled the fact,” Nichols said. “I would have recorded such a confession as a matter of form, as indeed, would have my colleagues. None was recorded.”
Ms. Andreu’s statement was made as part of a legal dispute involving Armstrong and a company that contractually owed him a $5M for winning The Tour in 2004. The company apparently accused Armstrong of cheating and refused to pay. A three-member board of arbitration listened to all testimony, including Ms. Andreu’s and ruled against the company, awarded Armstrong $7.5M, including damages.
Yawn. Another attempt by the French to discredit Armstrong and find a reason for them losing The Tour . . . again. At what point do we no longer consider this just a simple case of French sour grapes? OK, he kicked the ass of every French rider and all riders from the rest of the world and he did it on French soil. Yes, he did it seven times in a row. Mostly as a result of the claims made by every French journal printed in the last decade, he has been tested for banned substances more often than any other athlete in the history of sport – any sport. Yet, there has never been any proof or, in fact, any reason to believe that he cheated in any way (aside from his outstanding performance).
He enhanced the sport greatly and was a true champion that continues to give back. I have no reason to defend Lance Armstrong other than having some sense of decency and respect. Et vous, France?
Have you no self-esteem, France? No dignity? No sense of moral responsibility? No humility or respect? Why don’t you go lick your Airbus wounds and toss another corrupt socialist CEO out. You can get back to me on the questions later.