Best comment I saw, on deadspin.
"If I wanted to listen to some smug prick who rides a bike and takes drugs, I'd just go to Portland."
Part two tonight. Does Oprah have a big surprise for us?
I doubt it. The smug cunt is going to carry on existing in his own fantasy world.
He's a fairly young man, so he may redeem himself eventually. I imagine at this point the enormity of it all is hard to get a grasp on. It may be a cliche to say, but I think it's accurate that somebody who tells a lie often enough will eventually start to believe it. So far he's gotten far enough to understand that he doped and lied about it. That's a good start, but it's obviously not enough.
Reed John wrote:
From watching the interview, his defence for being the grand, shining, top-off-the-hill/king-of-the-mountian, glorious fanwa was that he was defending his “territory”. The way any alpha-male would. Any real alpha-male would. Why wouldn’t you? He was in the shit, a mire of shit – but he stood strong and showed a way to survive; to, if anything, protect the sport from your back-street, seaman-stained Frog, with his low-tech goofers and uppers, soiling those majestic mountains. He has a job in the higher echelons of the NRA waiting for him, I reckon.
JV will like this.
Martin C wrote:
Issues with civil to criminal liability in terms of levels of proof, I guess. The evidence in the USASA report is mostly slightly vague along the lines of 'I saw him taking something and it was probably this, maybe that.' Some of that testimony was already in place in 2010, but the key people only broke in 2012. Lots of the evidence as it stood in 2010 had already been tested in a court and had proved insufficiently presuavsive to even win a civil case.
The 1999 sample that was re-analysed and proved positive for EPO was officially done blindly. It wasn't retested in a bid to get Armstrong, it was done as a means of evaluating the effectiveness of the new EPO test. They went to a set of samples that they expected to contain some positives, those given by riders in the 1999 tour, and found some identified as from rider X (can't remember the number) coming up positive.
It took a journalist to pin down that they were Armstrong's samples by process of elimination. Though Armstrong gave his permission for his samples to be retested, he only gave it for them to be tested anonymously. So it could have been struck out as evidence.
The deductive process ran something like this*;
When samples are given to the lab, each rider is randomly assigned a unique identification number. This is an important protection against accusations of bias in the testing process. A sealed document is created which links the anonymous rider numbers to individual people, and this is only consulted after a sample gives a positive result.
As well as the rider number, samples are also dated. This was key in breaking the anonymity, as it meant that you could group the samples by stage as well as by rider. The protocol for who was selected for testing is public available knowledge, something like the 1-2-3 finishers on a stage plus the jersey holders and a couple of random selections. So if you have riders who have given a significant number of samples, you can overlay the grid of race results with the grid of samples and say with a high degree of confidence that rider x = A, rider y = B, etc. However, you cannot prove this absolutely due to the random tests.
Problems may arise if there was a statute of limitations type deal on the document which links rider numbers to individuals (n.b. this is speculation on my part). That is has either been destroyed, or was meant to have been destroyed which would render it inadmissible even if a copy still existed. Without it, there is no direct traceability linking a rider with specific samples. Then it doesn't matter if, to borrow Johnny Vaughters recent colourful phrase, CIA satellites could see a sample glowing at night, you can't use it as evidence in a court.
There would still be a value in retaining the samples after the destruction of the records linking them to specific riders, but only for research purposes.
* - source: an interview with Michael Ashenden that I either saw or heard a few months ago, but unfortunately can't dig back up at the moment.
So he won't admit anything post 2005, because of the statue of limitations thing.
What, however, is his reasoning for not admitting his earlier doping, i.e. why is he still saying that Betsy Andreu is making stuff up? Surely that stuff is so old that he doesn't need to worry about statue of limitations and all that? Is it just a case of him only admitting to the stuff he's been caught on, and desperately wanting to cling to his 1993 World Title? It seems like he is trying to sell some perverse line that he was a totally clean rider pre-cancer, and that the cancer turned him into a doper, which makes the doping seem forgiveable in his mind.
edit: I've now also watched the second Oprah interview. I know it's a soft-interview thing supposed to put him in good light and I shouldn't fall for it, but I'm finding it difficult to be angry with the guy any more. To be honest I feel sorry for the mess he has gotten himself into. He has some serious problems/demons to deal with. It's the old adage: Behind the façade of every bully is a guy with serious problems.
Oh sorry, forgot that you had said the same thing. Your idea must have been subconciously planted in my mind.
In the second Oprah interview she asks him if doping contributed to him getting cancer, to which he replied, "No, I don't think so" or words to that effect. There again he didn't deny doping before cancer. I guess now he is getting confused and can't remember which stuff he is still supposed to lie about for legal reasons and which stuff he is supposed to tell the truth about.
In a way he is also still peddling the omerta culture by claiming that the biological passport has made cycling totally clean, when we know that's not really true. And the whole "I promised Kristen I wouldn't dope for my 2009 comeback, so of course I didn't" was cringeworthy. The guy was riding for Astana with Johan Bruyneel for god's sake. Then Oprah asked again, "So you didn't take any banned substances or blood dope after your comeback?" and Lance visibly squirmed.
I find the whole 'did drugs give you cancer?' line quite uncomfortable. For one thing, it's an unanswerable question (how could anybody say either way?), and there's almost a subtext of 'well you deserved it then' to it (not from anyone on here though, I would stress).
Depends on the purpose of the question. If Oprah ran that as a trick question, then she has done a fantastic job in exposing Armstrong's lies.
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