Lance Armstrong

Lance Armstrong

Infobox Cyclist
ridername = Lance Armstrong

image_caption = Armstrong speaking at the NIH
birthname = Lance Edward Gunderson
fullname = Lance Edward Armstrong
nickname = The Boss, Tour de Lance, Mellow Johnny
(from Maillot Jaune, French for Yellow jersey) [Lance Armstrong, Sally Jenkins: "Every Second Counts", Chapter 1, (ISBN 0-385-50871-9), Broadway Books 2003.]
dateofbirth = birth date and age|mf=yes|1971|9|18
height = height|m=1.8
weight = 1993: convert|79|kg|lb|abbr=on
1999: convert|74|kg|lb|abbr=on
country = USA
currentteam = Astana
discipline = Road
role = Rider
ridertype = All - rounder
amateuryears = 1990–1991
amateurteams = Subaru-Montgomery
US National Team
proyears = 1992–1996
proteams = Motorola
U.S. Postal / Discovery Channel
majorwins = Tour de France (1999–2005), 22 stages
flagiconUCI World Cycling Champion (1993)
flagicon|USA US National Cycling Champion (1993)
Clásica de San Sebastián (1995)
La Flèche Wallonne (1996)
Tour de Suisse (2001)
Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (2002, 2003)
updated = July 26, 2008

Lance Armstrong (born Lance Edward Gunderson September 18, 1971) is an American professional road racing cyclist for UCI ProTeam Team Astana. He won the Tour de France a record-breaking seven consecutive years, from 1999 to 2005. He is the only individual to win seven times, having broken the previous record of five wins, shared by Miguel Indurain (consecutive) and Bernard Hinault, Eddy Merckx and Jacques Anquetil. He has survived testicular cancer, a germ cell tumor that metastasized to his brain and lungs, in 1996. His cancer treatments included brain and testicular surgery and extensive chemotherapy, and his prognosis was originally poor.

In 1999, he was named the American Broadcasting Company's Wide World of Sports Athlete of the Year. In 2000 he won the Prince of Asturias Award in Sports. [cite web|url=|title=Lance Armstrong|accessdate=2008-09-15] In 2002, "Sports Illustrated" magazine named him Sportsman of the Year. He was also named Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year for 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005. He received ESPN's ESPY Award for Best Male Athlete in 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006, and won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Overseas Personality Award in 2003. Armstrong retired from racing on July 24, 2005, at the end of the 2005 Tour de France. But, on September 9, 2008 confirmed that he will return to competitive cycling for the 2009 season. [cite web|url=|title=Lance Armstrong Rides Again.|publisher=Vanity Fair] Australian ABC radio reported on 24 September that Armstrong will compete in South Australia's Tour Down Under in early 2009.


Early career

Armstrong was born in Plano, Texas on September 18, 1971. He began his sporting career as a triathlete competing and winning in adult competitions from the age of 12. In the 1987–1988 Tri-Fed/Texas ("Tri-Fed" was the former name of USA Triathlon), Armstrong was the number one ranked triathlete in the 19 & under age group; second place was Chann McRae, who later became a US Postal Service Cycling teammate and the 2002 USPRO National Champion. Armstrong's points total for the 1987 season as an amateur athlete was better than the five professionals ranked that year. At 16 years old, Armstrong became a professional triathlete and became the national sprint-course triathlon champion in 1989 and 1990 at age 18 and 19, respectively.

It soon became clear that his greatest talent was as a bicycle racer after competing as a cycling amateur, he won the U.S. amateur championship in 1991. Representing the U.S., he finished 14th in the 1992 Summer Olympics with the help of teammates Bob Mionske and Timm Peddie.

In 1993, Armstrong finished the year ranked number one in the world, winning 10 one-day events and stage races. He became one of the youngest-ever riders to win the world road race championship, and took his first stage win at the 1993 Tour de France. He also collected the Thrift Drug "Triple Crown of Cycling", which included three separate races: the Thrift Drug Classic in Pittsburgh, the K-Mart West Virginia Classic, and the CoreStates USPRO National Championship in Philadelphia. Thrift Drug said it would award $1 million to any rider winning all 3 races, a feat which had never previously been done. At the USPRO Championship race, on the final lap circuit, Armstrong sat up on his bicycle, took out a comb, combed his hair and smiled for the cameras.

1994 was a less prolific year for Armstrong, although he again won the Thrift Drug Classic and came second in the Tour Du Pont in the U.S., his successes in Europe were limited to second placings in the Clásica San Sebastián and Liège - Bastogne - Liège races. He won the Clásica San Sebastián in 1995, and this time won the Tour Du Pont and took a handful of stage victories in Europe and the U.S. Armstrong's successes were much the same in 1996, and despite several small victories, he was an unremarkable rider in comparison to other riders achievements at the time. He finished 12th in the road race at the 1996 Olympic Games.


On October 2, 1996, Armstrong was diagnosed with nonseminomatous testicular cancer. The cancer had already spread to his lungs, abdomen and brain. The standard chemotherapeutic regimen for Armstrong's type of cancer is known as BEP (Bleomycin, Etoposide and Cisplatin (or Platinol)). Armstrong, however, chose to undergo an alternative regimen, VIP (vinblastine, ifosfamide and Cisplatin), in order to avoid the lung toxicity associated with the drug Bleomycin. [Lance Armstrong, Sally Jenkins: "It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life", Chapter 5, (ISBN 0-425-17961-3), Putnam 2000.] Armstrong underwent surgery on his brain tumors, which were found to be necrotic, and an orchiectomy to remove his diseased testicle.

Tour de France success

Before his cancer diagnosis and treatments, Armstrong had won two Tour de France stages. In 1993, he won the 8th stage and in 1995, he took stage 18 in honor of teammate Fabio Casartelli who crashed and died on stage 15.

Armstrong dropped out of the 1996 Tour De France in the 7th stage after becoming ill, a few months prior to his diagnosis with cancer.

Armstrong's cycling comeback began in 1998 when he finished fourth in the Vuelta a España. In 1999 he won the Tour de France, which included four stage wins. He beat the second place rider, Alex Zülle, by a margin of 7 minutes 37 seconds. However, the absence of Jan Ullrich (injury) and Marco Pantani (following drug misuse allegations) meant that Armstrong had not yet proven himself against the biggest names in cycling. Stage wins included the Prologue, stage eight, an individual time trial in Metz, an Alpine mountain stage win on stage nine, and the second individual time trial on stage 19.

In 2000, Ullrich and Pantani returned to challenge Armstrong. The race that began a six year rivalry between Ullrich and Armstrong ended in victory for Armstrong by a margin of 6 minutes 2 seconds over Ullrich. Armstrong took one stage win in the 2000 Tour by winning the second individual time trial on stage 19.In 2001, Armstrong again took top honors, beating Ullrich by 6 minutes 44 seconds.In 2002, Ullrich did not participate, and Armstrong won with a 7 minute lead over Joseba Beloki.

The familiar pattern returned in 2003, with Armstrong taking first place and Ullrich taking second place. Only 1 minute 1 second separated the two at the end of the final day in Paris. U.S. Postal won the team time trial on Stage four, while Armstrong took stage 15, despite being knocked off his bike on the ascent to Luz Ardiden, the day's final climb, when a spectator's bag caught his right handlebar. Ullrich waited for him, which brought Ullrich several fair-play honors. [cite web
title = Jan Ullrich wird zum "Ritter des Fair Play" (German for: Ullrich becomes "Knight of fairplay)
publisher = Fair play in Sports
url =
accessdaymonth = March 5 | accessyear=2007

In 2004, Armstrong finished first, 6 minutes 19 seconds ahead of German cyclist Andreas Klöden. Ullrich was fourth, a further 2 minutes 31 seconds behind. Armstrong won a personal best five individual stages, plus the team time trial. He became the first man since Gino Bartali in 1948 to win three consecutive mountain stages; 15, 16, and 17. The individual time trial on stage 16 up L'Alpe d'Huez was won in considerable style by Armstrong as he passed Ivan Basso on the way up the epic climb, despite setting out 2 minutes after the Italian. He won sprint finishes from Basso in stages 13 and 15 and made up a significant gap in the last 250 meters to nip Klöden at the line in stage 17. He won the final individual time trial, stage 19, to complete his personal record of stage wins.

In his final tour in 2005, completing his record breaking feat, Armstrong crossed the finishing line on the Champs-Élysées on July 24 to win his 7th consecutive Tour de France title, finishing 4 minutes 40 seconds ahead of Ivan Basso, with Jan Ullrich occupying the third space on the podium. He started this tour losing out on the first stage time trial by only two seconds while passing Ullrich on the road. His Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team won the team time trial, while Armstrong won one individual stage, the final individual time trial.

In addition to his 7 Tour de France wins, Armstrong has won 22 individual stages, 11 time trials, and his team won the team time trial on 3 occasions.

Physical attributes

Armstrong has an aerobic capacity of 83.8 mL/kg/min, much higher than the average person (40-50), but not as high as that of some other elite cyclists, such as Miguel Indurain (88.0, although reports exist that Indurain tested at 92-94). or Greg LeMond (92.5). [cite web
title = VO2 Max - a Measure of Athletic Fitness
publisher =
date = January 22, 2002
url =
accessdaymonth = August 13 | accessyear=2006
] His heart is 30 percent larger than average; however, an enlarged heart is a common trait for many other athletes. He has a resting heart rate of 32-34 beats per minute (bpm) with a maximum heart rate of 201 bpm. [The Lance Armstrong Performance Program ISBN 1-57954-270-0] Armstrong's most unusual attribute may be his low lactate levels. During intense training, the levels of most racers range from 12 μL/kg to as much as 20 μL/kg; Armstrong is below 6 μL/kg. This ability of lactate removal is most likely attributable to many years of hard training. Therefore, lactic acid buildup (or acidosis) does not occur as easily in his body. Acidosis, and lactate in general, does not cause fatigue but is a good, testable, marker for the cause of muscular fatigue — muscle cell depolarization. Some have theorized that his high pedaling cadence is designed to take advantage of this low lactate level. In contrast, other cyclists rely on their power to push a larger gear at a lower rate.

Collaboration of sponsors

Armstrong revolutionized the support behind his well-funded teams, asking his sponsors and equipment suppliers to contribute and act as one cohesive part of the team. [ New York Times: CYCLING; Overhauling Lance Armstrong] For example, rather than having the bike frame, handlebars, and tires of a bicycle designed and developed by separate companies with little interaction with each other, his teams adopted a Formula 1-style relationship with sponsors and suppliers named "F-One", [ Armstrong's 'F-One' group plots the hour] taking full advantage of the combined resources of several organizations working in close communication. The team, composed of Trek, Nike, AMD, Bontrager (a Trek-owned company), Shimano, Giro and Oakley, collaborated for a well-coordinated and technologically cutting-edge array of products.

Reasons for success

Many have discussed the reasons for Armstrong's success in winning seven Tours in a row. No single factor seems to be responsible, but rather a combination of the following:

Training methodology and preparation

Armstrong trained in Spain for months leading up to the Tour de France and made frequent trips to France to fully analyze and ride key parts of the upcoming Tour de France course.Since he focused solely on the Tour de France and seldom competed in other major races, he was able to train 180 days per year for the 23 days of the Tour, a significantly greater training time than riders who compete in other races.

=Coaching= Armstrong met former elite cyclist Chris Carmichael in 1990 and worked with him as his coach through all of his years at the Tour De France competitions.

The team's sports director, Belgian ex-cyclist Johan Bruyneel, was involved in all of Armstrong's victories. The Italian coach Michele Ferrari has also coached and advised Armstrong.

Riding style

Armstrong has a high lactate threshold and can maintain a higher cadence (often 120 rpm) in a lower gear than his competitors, most noticeably in the time trialsFact|date=October 2007. This style is in direct contrast to previous champions who used a high gear and brute strength to win time trials. It is believed that a high cadence results in less fatigue in the leg muscles than a lower cadence requiring more severe leg muscle contractions. Ultimately the cardiovascular system is worked to a greater extent with a high cadence than with a lower, more muscular cadence. Because the leg muscles are taxed less with a high cadence pedaling style, they recover faster, and the efforts can be sustained for longer periods of time. Armstrong dedicated a significant portion of his training to developing and maintaining a high cadence styleFact|date=October 2007.

trength of his team

Some have attributed Armstrong's success in recent years in part to his U.S. Postal Service cycling team (in 2005, the Discovery Channel Team). Throughout his wins in the Tour de France, Lance slowly built up the strength of his team. In his first few Tour victories, his team was not considered exceptionally strong. Yet it is evident by the wins of his team in the team time trial in his last three Tour de France victories that they were one of the most dominating teams in the Pro Tour Circuit. While the U.S. Postal Team competes in races worldwide, the riders were selected specifically to help Armstrong win the yellow jersey. In this way, the team's single-minded approach can be contrasted with other teams. For example, Jan Ullrich's T-Mobile team, as well as supporting Ullrich in the general classification, also had an eye for many years on the outcome of the points competition, which their sprinter Erik Zabel won for six consecutive years. However, the decisive moves in which he gained large leads over the competition involved Armstrong racing far ahead of his team, and Armstrong often fended off multiple attacks when his team faltered and he was isolated unexpectedly.

Family and personal life

Armstrong was born as Lance Edward Gunderson to Linda Walling and Eddie Charles Gunderson. He was named after Lance Rentzel, a Dallas Cowboys wide receiver. His father left his mother when Lance was two years old. His mother later married Terry Keith Armstrong, who adopted Lance in 1974. [cite web | first = William | last = Addams | title = Ancestry of Lance Armstrong |
publisher = William Addams Reitwiesner Genealogical Services ( "WARGS") | url = | accessdate = 2007-09-22
] Linda has been married and divorced four times. Lance has since refused to meet his birth father and has described his stepfather as deceitful. [cite web | first = Todd | last = Balf |title = "I'm Not the Next Greg LeMond. I'm the First Lance Armstrong." | publisher = Outside Magazine | month = July | year = 1994 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09]

Armstrong met Kristin Richard in June 1997. They were married on May 8, 1998, and have three children: Luke, born in October 1999, and twins Isabelle and Grace, born in November 2001. The pregnancy was made possible through the use of sperm Armstrong banked three years before, prior to having chemotherapy and surgery. [cite web | first = Sal | last = Ruibal | title = Cancer survivor Armstrong accepts new role | publisher = USA Today | date = May 22, 2002 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09] The couple filed for divorce in September 2003. At Armstrong's request, his kids were flown in for the podium ceremony in 2005, where Luke helped his father to hoist the trophy, while his twin daughters (in yellow dresses) held the stuffed lion mascot and bouquet of yellow flowers.

Armstrong began dating singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow some time in the autumn of 2003 and publicly revealed their relationship in January 2004. The couple announced their engagement in September 2005 and their split in February 2006. In October 2007, Armstrong and fashion designer Tory Burch ended a relationship after dating for several months. [ cite web | first = Stephen M. | last = Silverman | title = Lance Armstrong, Tory Burch Break Up | publisher = People Magazine | date = October 3, 2007 | url =,,20130255,00.html | accessdate = 2008-01-09] After that relationship ended, Armstrong was linked to Ashley Olsen, who is 15 years his junior. He had most recently been dating Kate Hudson, the American actress. On July 30, 2008, a representative for Kate Hudson announced that the relationship between her and Lance Armstrong had ended amicably. [cite web | title = Report: Ashley Olsen Dating Lance Armstrong | publisher = FOXNews | date = October 31, 2007 | url =,2933,306796,00.html | accessdate = 2008-06-17]

Armstrong owns a house in Austin, Texas, as well as a ranch in the Texas Hill Country. cite news | title = Armstrong attempts to quell dispute over Hill Country swimming hole | publisher = Associated Press | date = October 25, 2006 | url = | accessdate = 2006-10-25] In August 2008, the Austin American Statesman reported that Armstrong's Austin home was responsible for more water consumption than any other residence in the city. [cite news | title = Armstrong tops list of city's largest water users | last=Toohey | first=Marty | publisher = Austin American-Statesman | date = August 15, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-08-26] Neighbors of his ranch property claim that Armstrong inadvertently polluted a local swimming hole when he was creating a dam on his ranch. One neighboring family said that the problem existed for two years and that "you only have so much patience." Armstrong later cleaned it up, much to the satisfaction of his neighbors. [cite news | title = Lance Armstrong cleans up clouded swimming hole | publisher = Houston Chronicle | date = January 24, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-24] Armstrong is a fan of The University of Texas Longhorns college football program and is often seen at events and on the sidelines supporting the team.

Allegations of drug use

Armstrong has continually denied having used performance-enhancing drugs and has described himself as "the most tested athlete in the world". [cite web
last = BBC News
year = 2006
url =
title = Pound Stunned By Attack
accessdate = 2006-08-12
] Throughout his career only one test showed indications of the presence of doping products: in 1999, a urine sample showed traces of corticosteroids, but the amount was not in the positive test range. He later produced a medical certificate showing he used an approved cream for saddle sores which contained the substance.cite web
last = VeloNews Interactive, with wire services
year = 2005
url =
title = L'Equipe alleges Armstrong samples show EPO use in 99 Tour
work = News & Features
publisher = Inside Communications
accessdate = 2006-07-26
- "Throughout his career only one test showed indications of the presence of doping products. In the 1999 Tour, a urine sample showed small traces of cortico-steroids. Armstrong was cleared, however, when his U.S. Postal team, produced a medical certificate showing that he used a cream to ease the pain of a saddle sore. Even that sample, however, was below the levels that would have triggered a positive result at the time."]

Specific allegations

* In 2004, sports reporters Pierre Ballester and David Walsh jointly published a book alleging Armstrong had used performance-enhancing drugs ("L. A. Confidentiel - Les secrets de Lance Armstrong"). It contains allegations by Armstrong's former masseuse Emma O'Reilly who claimed that Armstrong once asked her to dispose of used syringes and give him makeup to conceal needle marks on his arms. Another key figure in the book, Steve Swart, claims that he and other riders, including Armstrong, began using drugs in 1995 while they were members of the Motorola team, a claim since denied by other team members. [ [ Stop strong-arm tactics] , "The Scotsman", June 20, 2004 ] Allegations in the book were reprinted in the UK newspaper "The Sunday Times" in a story by deputy sports editor Alan English in June 2004. Armstrong subsequently sued the newspaper for libel, which settled out of court after a High Court judge in a pretrial ruling stated that the article "meant accusation of guilt and not simply reasonable grounds to suspect." [ [,,1810152,00.html "The Guardian"] ] The newspaper's lawyers issued the following statement: "The Sunday Times has confirmed to Mr Armstrong that it never intended to accuse him of being guilty of taking any performance-enhancing drugs and sincerely apologised for any such impression." (See also [ [,,1536208,00.html Armstrong faces legal marathon] ] in "The Guardian"). Armstrong later dropped similar lawsuits in France. [ [ Lance drops lawsuits] , "The Austin American-Statesman", July 7, 2006]
* On March 31, 2005, Mike Anderson filed a brief [ [ Court brief] , by "Mike Anderson", March 31, 2005 - (warning: PDF-file, 2.8 MB)] in Travis County District Court in Texas, as part of a legal battle following his termination in November 2004 as an employee of Armstrong. Anderson worked for Armstrong for two years as a personal assistant. In the brief, Anderson claimed that he discovered a box of Androstenine while cleaning a bathroom in Armstrong's apartment in Girona, Spain. [ [ Papers: Lance had steroid in home] , "The Austin American-Statesman", April 1, 2005 ] While Androstenine is not on the list of banned drugs, the substances androstenedione and androstenediol are listed. However, Anderson stated in a subsequent deposition that he had no direct knowledge of Armstrong using a banned substance. Armstrong denied the claim and issued a counter-suit. [ [ Armstrong asks Austin court to sanction his former assistant] , "The Austin American-Statesman", April 2, 2005] The two men reached an out-of-court settlement in November 2005, the terms of the agreement undisclosed. [ [ Lance Armstrong settles lawsuit with former assistant] , "The Austin American-Statesman", November 5, 2005]
* On August 23, 2005, "L'Équipe", a major French daily sports newspaper, reported on its front page under the headline "le mensonge Armstrong" ("The Armstrong Lie") that 6 urine samples taken from the cyclist during the prologue and five stages of the 1999 Tour de France, frozen and stored since at "Laboratoire national de dépistage du dopage de Châtenay-Malabry" (LNDD), had tested positive for EPO in recent retesting conducted as part of a research project into EPO testing methods. [ [ L'EQUIPE.FR Cyclisme - CYCLISME - Affaire Armstrong ] ] [ [ MyWire | AFP: No comment on Armstrong from US cycling, anti-doping groups ] ] For years, it had been impossible to detect the drug, called erythropoietin, which builds endurance by boosting the production of oxygen carrying red blood cells. The world governing body of cycling, Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), did not begin using a urine test for EPO until 2001, two years after the sample were taken. This claim was based on an investigation in which they claimed to be able to match samples from the 1999 Tour that were used to hone the EPO test to Armstrong. [ [ Is he innocent? You decide] , "The Doping Journal, September 22, 2005] To establish a link between Armstrong and the samples, the LNDD matched the tracking numbers on the samples with those on Armstrong's record with the UCI during the 1999 Tour. Armstrong immediately replied on his website, saying, "Unfortunately, the witch hunt continues and tomorrow’s article is nothing short of tabloid journalism. The paper even admits in its own article that the science in question here is faulty and that I have no way to defend myself. They state: 'There will therefore be no counter-exam nor regulatory prosecutions, in a strict sense, since defendant’s rights cannot be respected.' I will simply restate what I have said many times: I have never taken performance enhancing drugs." [ [ "Litke: Suspicion Remains Lance's Opponent"] ]
* In June 2006, French newspaper "Le Monde" reported claims made by Betsy and Frankie Andreu during a deposition that Armstrong had admitted using performance-enhancing drugs to his physician just after brain surgery in 1996. The Andreus' testimony was related to litigation between Armstrong and SCA Promotions, a Texas-based company that was attempting to withhold a $5-million bonus; this was eventually settled out of court with SCA paying Armstrong and Tailwind Sports $7.5 million, to cover the $5-million bonus plus interest and lawyers' fees. Armstrong later issued a statement suggesting that Betsy Andreu may have been confused by possible mention of his "post-operative treatment" which included steroids and EPO that are routinely taken to counteract wasting and red-blood-cell-destroying effects of intensive chemotherapy. [ [ Armstrong issues statement] ] The Andreus' allegation was not supported by any of the eight other people present, including Armstrong's doctor Craig Nichols, [ [ Papers charge Armstrong admitted doping] ] or his medical history, although according to Greg LeMond (who has been embroiled with his own disputes with Armstrong), there exists a recorded conversation in which Stephanie McIlvain, Armstrong's contact at Oakley Inc., told LeMond, "You know, I was in that room. I heard it." [ [ Ex-Friends Say Armstrong Admitted Drug Use] ]
* In July 2006, the "Los Angeles Times" published an in-depth story on the allegations raised in the SCA case. [ [,0,5275381.story?coll=la-home-headlines] Dead link|date=September 2007] The report cited evidence presented at the trial including the results of the LNDD test and an analysis of these results by an expert witness. [ [,0,416411.graphic?coll=la-home-headlines Evidence of a banned substance?] ] From the "LA Times" article: "The results, Australian researcher Michael Ashenden testified in Dallas, show Armstrong's levels rising and falling, consistent with a series of injections during the Tour. Ashenden, a paid expert retained by SCA Promotions, told arbitrators the results painted a "compelling picture" that the world's most famous cyclist "used EPO in the '99 Tour." [ [,0,5275381.story?page=3&coll=la-home-headlines] Dead link|date=September 2007] Ashenden's finding were disputed by the Vrijman report, which pointed to procedural and privacy issues in dismissing the LNDD test results. The "LA Times" article also provided in-depth information on the testimony given by Armstrong's former teammate Steven Swart, Frankie Andreu and his wife Betsy, and Instant messaging conversation between Andreu and Jonathan Vaughters regarding blood-doping techniques in the peloton. Vaughters later signed a statement disavowing the comments and stating he had: "no personal knowledge that any team in the Tour de France, including Armstrong's Discovery team in 2005, engaged in any prohibited conduct whatsoever." Andreu signed a statement affirming the conversation took place as indicated on the Instant messaging logs submitted to the court. The SCA trial was settled out of court, and the "LA Times" reported: "Though no verdict or finding of facts was rendered, Armstrong called the outcome proof that the doping allegations were baseless." The "L.A. Times"' article provides a comprehensive review of the disputed positive EPO test, allegations and sworn testimony against Armstrong, but notes that: "They are filled with conflicting testimony, hearsay and circumstantial evidence admissible in arbitration hearings but questionable in more formal legal proceedings."
*In September 2006, Frankie Andreu and another unnamed teammate were reported to have made recent statements that they used EPO during the 1999 Tour de France. This was the same tour, and the same drug, at issue in the controversy with the World Anti-Doping Agency. While both teammates are reported as saying they never saw Armstrong use EPO, Armstrong at once attacked the article, describing it as a "hatchet job". []


In October 2005, in response to calls from the International Olympic Committee and the World Anti-Doping Agency ("WADA") for an independent investigation, UCI appointed Dutch lawyer Emile Vrijman to conduct an independent investigation of the handling of urine tests by the French national anti-doping laboratory, LNDD. Vrijman was the head of the Dutch anti-doping agency for ten years; since then he has worked as a defense attorney defending high-profile athletes against doping charges. [cite web | title = California Western Alumni Professional News | publisher = California Western School of Law | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09] Vrijman's report cleared Armstrong because of improper handling and testing. [cite web | title = Armstrong cleared in drug inquiry | publisher = BBC | date = May 31, 2006 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09] [cite web | title = UCI report clears Armstrong | publisher = Associated Press | work = VeloNews | date = May 31, 2006 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09 ] The report said that tests on urine samples were conducted improperly and fell so short of scientific standards that it was "completely irresponsible" to suggest they "constitute evidence of anything." [cite web | first = Arthur | last = Max | title = Report Exonorates Armstrong of Doping | publisher = Associated Press | work = San Francisco Chronicle | date = May 31, 2006 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09] The recommendation of the commission's report was that no disciplinary action should be taken against any rider on the basis of the LNDD research. It also called upon the WADA and LNDD to submit themselves to an investigation by an outside independent authority. [cite web | title = Independent Investigation - Analysis Samples from the 1999 Tour de France | publisher = Scholten c.s. Advocaten | work = VeloNews | url = | format = PDF | accessdate = 2008-01-09 ] The WADA rejected these conclusions. [cite web | title = Wada boss slams Armstrong 'farce' | publisher = BBC | date = June 2, 2006 | url = BBC ] The IOC Ethics Commission subsequently censured Dick Pound, the President of WADA and a member of the IOC, for his statements in the media that suggested wrongdoing by Armstrong.

Post-cycling career

Since retirement, Armstrong has focused his efforts on the Lance Armstrong Foundation, which provides support for people affected by cancer, and on other interests. He was the pace car driver of the Chevrolet Corvette Z06 for the 2006 Indianapolis 500.

In 2007, Lance Armstrong along with Andre Agassi, Muhammad Ali, Warrick Dunn, Jeff Gordon, Mia Hamm, Tony Hawk, Andrea Jaeger, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Mario Lemieux, Alonzo Mourning, and Cal Ripken, Jr. founded Athletes for Hope, a charitable organization which helps professional athletes get involved in charitable causes and inspires millions of non-athletes to volunteer and support the community. [ [ Athletes for Hope] ]


After his retirement, Armstrong continued to stay fit and decided to run the New York City Marathon accompanied by friend Robert Mc Elligott. Together with Nike, he assembled a pace team consisting of well known runners Alberto Salazar, Joan Benoit Samuelson, and Hicham El Guerrouj to help him reach his goal time of 3 hours. He struggled with shin splints and was on pace for a little above 3 hours but pushed through the last convert|5|mi|km to come through at 2:59:36, finishing 856th. He commented that the race was extremely difficult, even when compared to competing in the Tour de France. "For the level of condition that I have now, that was without a doubt the hardest physical thing I have ever done. I never felt a point where I hit the wall. It was really a gradual progression of fatigue and soreness." [cite news|url=|title=Lance Armstrong: A Classic Case of Too Much, Too Soon?||date=January 7, 2007] The NYC Marathon had a dedicated camera on Armstrong throughout the event. [|title=Watch the NYC Marathon ONLINE - Live or OnDemand!||date=November 2, 2006] This camera, according to Armstrong, pushed him to continue without stop through points in which he would have normally "stopped and stretched". He also helped raise $600,000 for his LiveStrong campaign during the run.

Lance Armstrong stated that despite the difficulty he had in the 2006 race, he wanted to do the race again in 2007. [cite news|url=|title=Armstrong to race 2007 NYC Marathon|publisher=Reuters|date=November 21, 2006] On February 12, 2007, Armstrong officially announced his decision to enter the November 4, 2007, ING New York City Marathon. [cite news|url=|title=AP report says that Armstrong will run NYC Marathon AGAIN on November 4, 2007||date=February 13, 2007] Armstrong completed the 2007 NYC Marathon in 2:46:43 finishing 232nd. [ [ Results - The ING New York City Marathon] ]

On April 21, 2008, Armstrong completed the 2008 Boston Marathon in 2:50.58, finishing in the top 500. [ [ Search - ] ]


In an interview with the "New York Times", teammate George Hincapie hinted at Armstrong possibly running for Governor of Texas after retiring from cycling. In the July 2005 issue of "Outside" magazine, Armstrong hinted at possibly running for governor, although "not in '06". [cite web | title = Breaking Away | publisher = Outside Magazine | month = July | year = 2005 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-09] Armstrong and President George W. Bush, a Republican and fellow Texan, call themselves friends. President Bush called Armstrong in France after his 2005 victory to congratulate him, and in August 2005, "The Times" reported the President had invited Armstrong to his Prairie Chapel Ranch to go mountain biking. [cite web | first = Tom | last = Baldwin | title = Can this bike ride be Bush's tour de force? | publisher = The Times | date = August 18, 2005 | url =,,11069-1739689,00.html | accessdate = 2008-01-09] In a 2003 interview with "The Observer", Armstrong stated of Bush: "He's a personal friend, but we've all got the right not to agree with our friends". [ [,6903,992329,00.html Serena got the message, now it's Lance's turn as French cheers become jeers for US stars | World news | "The Observer"] ] Armstrong has described himself as; "Left of center, against the war in Iraq, and pro-choice". [ [ "Daily Kos": Lance Armstrong is a Democrat!] ] [ [ - Blogging about politics and media from Nashville] ]

In August 2005, Armstrong has hinted that he has changed his mind about possibly entering politics. In an interview with Charlie Rose, that aired on PBS on August 1, 2005, Armstrong pointed out that running for governor would require the type of time commitments that caused him to decide to retire from cycling. Again on August 16, 2005, Armstrong told a local Austin CBS affiliate [] that he is no longer considering politics. "The biggest problem with politics or running for the governor—the governor's race here in Austin or in Texas—is that it would mimic exactly what I've done: a ton of stress and a ton of time away from my kids. Why would I want to go from pro cycling, which is stressful and a lot of time away, straight into politics?"

In 2006, Armstrong began to clarify that he intends to be involved in politics as an activist for change in cancer policies. In a May 2006 interview with "Sports Illustrated", Armstrong is quoted as saying "I need to run for one office, the presidency of the Cancer Fighters' Union of the World." "Sports Illustrated" also quotes Armstrong as saying that he fears halving his influence with legislators if he chooses one side in American partisan politics. His foundation is becoming more involved in lobbying on behalf of cancer patients before United States Congress.


According to a September 8, 2008 article, anonymous sources claim that Lance Armstrong will return to cycling and hopes to be able to compete in the 2009 Tour de France. He will compete in five road races with the Astana team in 2009, the cycling journal VeloNews reported on its web site.This move would reunite Armstrong with Astana Team Director Johan Bruyneel.VeloNews reported Armstrong also will compete in the Amgen Tour of California, Paris-Nice, the Tour de Georgia and the Dauphine-Libere.The Astana team, however, was not allowed to compete in this year's Tour after Alexandre Vinokourov was kicked out of the 2007 Tour for testing positive and the team quit the race.VeloNews, which said Vanity Fair will publish an extensive article detailing Armstrong's comeback, said the cyclist will race for no salary or bonuses and post his internally tested blood work online. []

On September 9, 2008, Armstrong announced that he will return to pro cycling with the goal of winning the 2009 Tour de France. [Associated Press via The Arizona Republic, [ "Lance Armstrong to return for 2009 Tour de France"] .] "After talking with my children, my family and my closest friends, I have decided to return to professional cycling in order to raise awareness of the global cancer burden," Armstrong said Tuesday in a statement posted on his website. [USATODAY, [ "Armstrong coming out of retirement for another Tour"] .]

Australian ABC radio reported on 24 September 2008 that Armstrong will compete in South Australia's Tour Down Under in early 2009.

Teams and victories

;1992 - Motorola: Settimana Bergamasca (stage 6): Vuelta a Galicia (Stage 4a): Trittico Premondiale (Stage 2) (or GP Sanson): First Union Grand Prix (Atlanta): Fitchburg-Longsjo Classic (overall, 1 stage win)

;1993 - Motorola: flagiconUCI World Cycling Champion - UCI Road World Championships: flagicon|USA US National Cycling Champion - CoreStates USPRO National Road Championships:Tour de France (Stage 8):Tour of America (overall):Trofeo Laigueglia:Tour du Pont (2nd overall, 1 stage win):Tour of Sweden (3rd overall, 1 stage win):Thrift Drug Classic:Kmart West Virginia Classic (overall, 2 stage wins)

;1994 - Motorola:Thrift Drug Classic:Tour du Pont (1 stage win)

;1995 - Motorola:Tour de France (Stage 18):Clásica de San Sebastián:Paris-Nice (Stage 5):Tour du Pont (overall, mountains, 3 stage wins):Kmart West Virginia Classic (overall, 2 stage wins):Tour of America (overall)

;1996 - Motorola:Tour du Pont (overall, 5 stage wins):La Flèche Wallonne

;1997 - Cofidis: Sprint 56K Criterium (Austin, TX)

;1998 - U.S. Postal Service Pro Cycling Team:Rheinland-Pfalz Rundfahrt (overall):Tour de Luxembourg (overall, 1 stage win):Cascade Cycling Classic:Vuelta a España (4th overall)

;1999 - U.S. Postal Service Pro Cycling Team:Tour de France (overall, 4 stage wins):Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (ITT) (Prologue):Route du Sud (Stage 4):Circuit de la Sarthe (ITT) (Stage 4)

;2000 - U.S. Postal Service Pro Cycling Team:Tour de France (overall, 1 stage win):GP des Nations:Grand Prix Eddy Merckx (with Viatcheslav Ekimov):Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (ITT) (Stage 3):Bronze medal in the 2000 Summer Olympics Individual Time Trial, Men

;2001 - U.S. Postal Service Pro Cycling Team:Tour de France (overall, 4 stage wins):Tour de Suisse (overall, 2 stage wins)

;2002 - U.S. Postal Service Pro Cycling Team:Tour de France (overall, 4 stage wins):Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (overall, Stage 6):GP du Midi Libre (overall):Profronde van Stiphout ("post-Tour criterium")

;2003 - US Postal Service Pro Cycling Team
presented by Berry Floor:Tour de France (overall, 1 stage win, Team Time Trial):Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (overall, Stage 3 ITT)

;2004 - US Postal Service pro Cycling Team
presented by Berry Floor:Tour de France (overall, 5 stage wins, Team Time Trial):Tour de Georgia (overall, 2 stage wins):Tour du Languedoc-Roussillon (Stage 5):Volta ao Algarve (ITT) (Stage 4):Profronde van Stiphout ("post-Tour criterium")

;2005 - Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team:Tour de France (overall, 1 stage win, Team Time Trial):Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré (points classification)

;2008 - Lance Armstrong Foundation / Team Livestrong: Leadville Trail 100 Mountain Bike Race (2nd place): 12 Hours of Snowmass (1st place with Len Zanni and Max Taam)

Amateur cycling and triathlon years

;1991 - Subaru-Montgomery / US National Team: USA National Amateur Road Race Champion: Settimana Bergamasca (overall and youth classifications): Tour de Gastown criterium (Vancouver, BC): Challenge of Champions Triathlon (Monterey, CA);1990 - Subaru-Montgomery: USA National Sprint Triathlon Champion: Stonebridge Ranch Triathlon (McKinney, TX);1989: USA National Sprint Triathlon Champion: Waco Triathlon (Waco, TX);1988: Athens YMCA Triathlon (Athens, TX) (course record): River Triathlon (Shreveport, LA) (course record): Hillcrest Tulsa Triathlon (Tulsa, OK);1987: Texas State Triathlon Championship: Hillcrest Tulsa Triathlon (course record) [ [ Tulsa World: One for the books ] ] ;1986: Norman Triathlon (Norman, OK);1985: 2nd, IronKids Triathlon National Championship [] : IronKids Triathlon at Houston (regional level): IronKids Triathlon at Dallas (local level);1983: IronKids Triathlon at Dallas


* "" (2004)


* United States Olympic Committee (USOC) SportsMan of the Year (1999, 2001, 2002, 2003)
* Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005)
* World's Most Outstanding Athlete Award, Jesse Owens International Trophy (2000)
* Reuters Sportsman of the Year (2003)
* Prince of Asturias Award in Sports (2000)
* Sports Ethics Fellows by the Institute for International Sport (2003)
* Laureus World Sports Award for Sportsman of the Year (2003)
* Laureus World Sports Award for Comeback of the Year (2000)
* Trophee de L'Academie des Sport [France] (2004)
* "Vélo d'Or" Award by Velo Magazine in France (1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004)
* "Mendrisio d'Or" Award in Switzerland (1999)
* "Premio Coppi-Bici d'Oro" Trophy by the Fausto Coppi foundation in conjunction with La Gazzetta dello Sport (1999, 2000)
* "Marca Legend" Award by Marca, a Spanish sports daily in Madrid (2004)
* BBC Sports Personality of the Year Overseas Personality Award (2003)
* ESPY Award for Best Male Athlete (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006)
* ESPY Award for GMC Professional Grade Play Award (2005)
* ESPY Award for Best Comeback Athlete (2000)
* ESPN/Intersport's "ARETE Award" for Courage in Sport (Professional Division) (1999)
* ABC's Wide World of Sports Athlete of the Year (1999)
* Favorite Athlete award at Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards (2006)
* Presidential Delegation to the XIX Olympic Winter Games (2002) [cite press release
title=President Announces Delegation to Winter Olympics
date=February 8, 2002
publisher=The White House
* Sports Illustrated magazine's Sportsman of the Year (2002)
* VeloNews magazine's International Cyclist of the Year (2000, 2001, 2003, 2004)
* VeloNews magazine's North American Male Cyclist of the Year (1993, 1995, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2002, 2005)
* William Hill Sports Book of the Year: "" (2000) [cite web |url= |title=Previous William Hill Sportsbook of the Year Winners |accessdate=2007-03-03 |last= |first= |authorlink= |coauthors= |date= |year= |month= |format= |work= |publisher=William Hill Press Office |pages= |archiveurl= |archivedate= |quote=2000 Winner: It's Not About The Bike - Lance Armstrong ]
* Union Cycliste Internationale: World Number 1 Ranked Elite Men's Cyclist (1996)
* Triathlon magazine's Rookie of the Year (1988)
* Pace car driver for the Indianapolis 500 (2006)
* An asteroid, 1994 JE9 was named 12373 Lancearmstrong in honor of him.
* Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters, Tufts University


* On the Champs-Élysées podium for the last time, after winning his seventh tour: "Finally the last thing I'll say to the people who don’t believe in cycling, the cynics and the skeptics. I'm sorry for you. I'm sorry that you can’t dream big. I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles. But this is one hell of a race. This is a great sporting event and you should stand around and believe it. You should believe in these athletes, and you should believe in these people. I'll be a fan of the Tour de France for as long as I live. And there are no secrets - this is a hard sporting event and hard work wins it. So Vive le Tour forever. Thank you!" [ [] ]
*About the French 2006 FIFA World Cup team during his speech of gratitude at the ESPY Awards: "All their players tested positive... for being assholes." [ [,,1821547,00.html Guardian] ]
*"Pain is temporary, it may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever." [ [ Back in the Saddle - An Essay by Lance Armstrong] ]
*"Anything is possible. You can be told that you have a 90-percent chance or a 50-percent chance or a 1-percent chance, but you have to believe, and you have to fight." [ ISBN 0399146113]
*"A boo is a lot louder than a cheer, if you have 10 people cheering and one person booing all you hear is the booing." [cite web | first = Kelli | last = Anderson | title = King of the Hill | publisher = CNNSI | date = August 5, 2002 | url = Sports Illustrated | accessdate = 2008-01-09]
*"At the end of the day, if there was indeed some Body or presence standing there to judge me, I hoped I would be judged on whether I had lived a true life, not on whether I believed in a certain book, or whether I'd been baptized. If there was indeed a God at the end of my days, I hoped he didn't say, "But you were never a Christian, so you're going the other way from heaven." If so, I was going to reply, "You know what? You're right. Fine." [ [ Rational Atheist] ]
*"Without cancer, I never would have won a single Tour de France. Cancer taught me a plan for more purposeful living, and that in turn taught me how to train and to win more purposefully. It taught me that pain has a reason, and that sometimes the experience of losing things–whether health or a car or an old sense of self–has its own value in the scheme of life. Pain and loss are great enhancers." ["Forbes Magazine" December 3, 2001]
*"Well obviously I have some talent." [ Young Interview with Lance [] ]
*"Everybody wants to know what I am on. What am I on? I'm on my bike, busting my ass six hours a day. What are you on?" [Lance Armstrong ruined my gym [] ]

ee also

* Cycling records
* List of doping cases in cycling


Further reading

* Lance Armstrong, Sally Jenkins: "" (ISBN 0-425-17961-3), Putnam 2000. Armstrong's own account of his battle with cancer and subsequent triumphant return to bike racing.
* Lance Armstrong, Sally Jenkins: "Every Second Counts" (ISBN 0-385-50871-9), Broadway Books 2003. Armstrong's account of his life after his first four Tour triumphs.
* Linda Armstrong Kelly, Joni Rodgers: "No Mountain High Enough: Raising Lance, Raising Me" (ISBN 0-7679-1855-X), Broadway Books 2002. Armstrong's mother's account of raising a world class athlete and overcoming adversity.
* Daniel Coyle: "Lance Armstrong's War: One Man's Battle Against Fate, Fame, Love, Death, Scandal, and a Few Other Rivals on the Road to the Tour De France" (ISBN 0-06-073497-3), Harper Collins 2005. Former writer for Outside magazine documents Armstrong's road to the Tour in 2004, teaching us about both Lance and the Tour.
* Pierre Ballester, David Walsh: "L. A. Confidentiel: Les secrets de Lance Armstrong" (ISBN 2-84675-130-7), La Martinière fr icon. Various circumstantial evidence pointing to Armstrong doping.
* Pierre Ballester, David Walsh: "L.A. Officiel" (ISBN 2-84675-204-4), La Martinière fr icon. Why Lance Armstrong gave up trial against the authors after publication of L.A. Confidentiel.
* Sharon Cook, Graciela Sholander: "Dream It Do It: Inspiring Stories of Dreams Come True" (ISBN 1-884587-30-5), Planning/Communications 2004. Chapter 4 details Lance Armstrong's efforts to return to championship form following his cancer treatment.
* John Wilcockson: "23 Days in July" (ISBN 0-7195-6717-3), John Murray 2004. An account of how Armstrong won his 6th Tour title in 2004.
* John Wilcockson: "The 2005 Tour De France: The Last Chapter of the Armstrong Era" (ISBN 1-931382-68-9), Velo Press 2005. The story behind Lance's last ever Tour de France and his 7th consecutive victory.

External links

* [ Vanity Fair's 2008 Profile]
* [ Lance Armstrong's Official Website]
* [ The Lance Armstrong Foundation]
* [ LIVESTRONG.COM - Daily health, fitness and lifestyle website]
* [ Nike and the Lance Armstrong Foundation's "Wear Yellow - Live Strong" campaign]
* [ Athletes for Hope]
* USA TODAY: [ Tour de France; Fighting cancer is new mission for Armstrong.]
* [ The main website for info about the Discovery Channel team]
* BBC Sport [ Profile Lance Armstrong]
* [ livestrong]
* [ Cycling News: The Legend of Lance: an Armstrong retrospective] , August 3, 2005
* [ U.S. Olympic Team bio] ... four photo galleries
* [ United Athletes Magazine] Armstrong's physical qualities and abilities
* [ Reflective Montage]
* [ Video of Lance Armstrong speaking at the "2007 Aspen Ideas Festival"] , 07/04/2007

NAME= Armstrong, Lance Edward
SHORT DESCRIPTION=American professional road racing cyclist
DATE OF BIRTH= September 18, 1971

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