The Armstrong Interview - Was it all we had hoped for?

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01/21/2013| 1 comment
by Neil Browne

The Armstrong Interview - Was it all we had hoped for?

Step one towards redemption is complete. What's step two?

manipulation. Who do we trust – a guy who admits he has no credibility and has lied to us for 15 years or the USADA which has successfully proven its case?

With his silence and by not naming names, Armstrong once again holds all the cards. He could easily toss the UCI under the bus by claiming they were complicit in his doping. Or he could stay closer to home and make accusations against USA Cycling, which has ties with San Francisco-based banker Thom Weisel.

Weisel was owner of Tailwind, a company which managed the U.S. Postal racing team. According to the S.F. Weekly, Weisel was sick of losing money with his sponsorship of the Montgomery-Bell cycling team, signed Armstrong to get results, and looked the other way when it came to doping so they could finally get some wins. As a result of the high profile signing of Armstrong and the results Weisel landed a contract with the U.S. Postal Service to sponsor a cycling team. Several riders on the Montgomery-Bell team rode for the U.S. Postal team which continued to be managed by Weasel…err I mean Weisel’s Tailwind company.

Armstrong’s silence could be his last ace to use against people or the equivalent of a doomsday button – if he goes down he’s blowing everything up taking everyone with him.

At this point only time will tell what will happen next in the Armstrong saga. Johan Bruyneel is said to be penning his own book about what happened during those days. The Belgian is also to appear at a United States Anti-Doping arbitration meeting sometime this year. My own personal feeling is that he’ll never stand in front of a hearing to defend himself. Like I mentioned, there’s no believable evidence to contradict what many people have said.

We have reached the pinnacle of the Armstrong myth. The Oprah interview is over and for most of the population the story is done. Those of us who report on cycling know that this will sadly continue. In order for the sport to truly move on Armstrong’s web of influence must be unwound no matter the consequences. Unfortunately that might still take a while.

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Well written, thanks Neil.