The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

ENE Xtra

October 10, 2012

11 teammates testified in case against Armstrong

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency says 11 of Lance Armstrong's former teammates testified against him in its investigation of the cyclist, revealing "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen."

USADA will deliver its reasoned decision, a summary of the facts it used to hand him a lifetime suspension and erase his seven Tour de France titles, against Armstrong later today.

In a news release previewing the decision, USADA CEO Travis Tygart said it would include more than 1,000 pages of evidence. He listed 11 of Armstrong's former teammates, including George Hincapie, Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton, as among those providing evidence that led to the sanction.

In delivering the report to the International Cycling Union, Tygart called for the federation to create a meaningful program to help clean up the sport.

Tygart said the evidence shows the code of silence that dominated cycling has been shattered.

He said evidence from 26 people, including 15 riders with knowledge of the U.S. Postal Service Team's doping activities, provided testimony for the report. It was with the USPS team that Armstrong won all but one of his Tour titles from 1999-2005.

Other cyclists named in the news release were Frankie Andreu, Michael Barry, Tom Danielson, Levi Leiphimer, Stephen Swart, Christian Vande Velde, Jonathan Vaughters and David Zabriskie.

In a letter to USADA attorneys sent Tuesday, Armstrong's attorney dismissed any evidence provided by Landis and Hamilton, calling them "serial perjurers and have told diametrically contradictory stories under oath."

Hincapie's role in the investigation could be more damaging, as he was one of Armstrong's closest and most loyal teammates through the years.

"I have personally talked with and heard these athletes' stories and firmly believe that, collectively, these athletes, if forgiven and embraced, have a chance to leave a legacy far greater for the good of the sport than anything they ever did on a bike," Tygart said.

He said all the facts in the Armstrong case and the cases of six other riders targeted in USADA's investigation will be made available on the agency's website later Wednesday.

Two other players in the Postal team's circle, Dr. Michele Ferrari and Dr. Garcia del Moral, also received lifetime as part of the case.

Three other members of the USPS Team will take their cases to arbitration. They are team director Johan Bruyneel, team doctor Pedro Celaya and team trainer Jose "Pepe" Marti.

 

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