Saturday, August 25, 2012

Lance Armstrong Quits Fighting USADA Charges, Stripped of 7 Tour de France Titles

This should be a very sad day for sports, in any which way, whether he is guilty of doping or even if he is not.
Lance Armstrong had just been stripped by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) of all the seven Tour de France titles he won since August 1, 1998 and would be banned from competing for life.
In June, USADA had formally filed doping charges against Armstrong, a move consolidating years of speculations and accusation brought against the legendary American cyclist for use of performance enhancing drugs. Armstrong countered with a lawsuit against USADA in July before a federal court in Texas but the judge threw it out the following day. A revised lawsuit earlier this month had similarly been set aside by the courts there, leaving Armstrong the option of whether or not he would enter into arbitration to fight USADA's charges.
Armstrong had refused to head into arbitration and decided to finally stop fighting USADA , finally declaring "enough is enough", a decision which now leads to the stripping of his phenomenal 7 Tour de France titles, which he won through a stunning streak of incomparable cycling prowess, one that is unparalleled in the cycling world  or even in any other international sports for that matter --- as phenomenal as the Boston Celtics 8 consecutive title run in the 60's. Seven titles in seven years, a feat that had made Lance Armstrong a byword in every nook and cranny of the sporting world, even among those who were not cycling fans.
Sanctions against the legendary American cyclist would now end a mythical career that had the world gripping and tremendously awed for almost a decade. His wins captivated audience all over the world and Tour de France had reached peak popularity because of his fascinating wins, stage after stage. And fans the world over wore the highly-identifiable Livestrong yellow bracelet in support of the fabled cyclist.
In finally deciding to quit fighting this latest and most serious charges to date against him, Armstrong reiterated that his refusal for arbitration  does not mean that he is guilty; he is merely opting to redirect his focus on his family and his foundation Livestrong, an organization he founded in 1997 in relation to his ailment of testicular cancer, which he battled through against successfully.
Armstrong had only fiery words for USADA especially against its head, CEO Travis Tygart.
"USADA cannot assert control of a professional international sport and attempt to strip my seven Tour de France titles. I know who won those seven Tours, my teammates know who won those seven Tours, and everyone I competed against knows who won those seven Tours. We all raced together. For three weeks over the same roads, the same mountains, and against all the weather and elements that we had to confront. There were no shortcuts, there was no special treatment. The same courses, the same rules. The toughest event in the world where the strongest man wins. Nobody can ever change that. Especially not Travis Tygart." Armstrong stated in an official pronouncement he released in his website.
And with this, the phenomenal cycling career of one of the most splendid cyclist in the world, if not the most splendid of all, and who could have been one of the finest athletes ever, except for these doping charges that strips him off the most memorable and significant wins in his career, finally comes to a heartrending end.
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16 comments:

  1. This is so sad, the fans must be really disappointed! :(

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  2. The USADA has no jurisdiction over the Tour de France which makes it odd for US to meddle in this events but Lance Armstrong is right to just let things be but you can take the trophies and the accolades from him but you can never take the winner in him.

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  3. This is a bad news :/ I'm not a big fan but hearing something like this makes me really sad.

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  4. I am sad. Lance is a great cyclist. ENOUGH is ENOUGH.

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  5. Why did they wait for him to win 7 Tours before filing the charges? Are they not several years too late? :(

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  6. Maybe the guy already got tired of defending himself, that's why he gave up everything to buy peace. People will still see him as a winner becuase the USADA has not proven if he used performance enhancers or not.

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  7. sad to hear the news but i'm sure he has his own reasons that he has to retire.

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  8. whew,, why is that most of the athletics are getting hooked up with doping? hmmm.. an enormous loss for him. how bad. :(

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  9. @ Lipstick.chopstick: I bet they are hugely disappointed, he with the yellow armed band and celebrity girlfriend.

    @ Franc Ramon: That's what I thought Franc, how come USADA, which is not even a government agency, but merely an NGO, could stripped Armstrong with his Tour de France titles.
    @ Algene: Indeed Algene, I felt that way too. What a legacy he had been, and now that's just gone in a jiffy.

    @ Raine Pal: Yeah, he should have kept on fighting and defending his titles and honor; he is a champion for nothing.

    @ Leah : Apparently Leah, in those years, the suspicion had not much evidence but only empty talks and gossips. But USADA apparently had been able to come up with enough evidence only by now.

    @ Les: Probably Les, He was getting old for one.

    @ Mel Cole : He said he was focusing now on his family.

    @ Janine: Really bad Janine, after all those struggles and championships, only to be taken away.

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  10. Oh my, so sad. I guess, family comes first :)

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  11. Too bad! A window would open for this guy...

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  12. This is really sad, talagang ganun pag sikat tinitira at iniintriga. Marami lang siguring inggit sa kanya =(

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  13. Sad news, i'm one of his fan pa naman.

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  14. They can take the trophies, awards and medals, but they can't take those people who believes in him. Team Lance Armstrong here.

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  15. He is a winner still in my mind. His greatest Tour de France was for him to survive cancer and still win events after recovering by retraining again!

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