Foundation Defends Lance Armstrong Over Drug Allegations
15 June 2012 at 4:07 pm
The Foundation set up by cyclist Lance Armstrong to assist people affected by cancer has come to his defense after revelations the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) is levelling formal charges against him for distributing and administering drugs.
The USADA action means that Armstrong cannot currently enter any more triathlons, and if the charges are found to be true, he could stand to lose his seven Tour de France titles.
The Washington Post claims it has information from “multiple riders with first hand knowledge” that are willing to testify "Armstrong used EPO, blood transfusions, testosterone and masking agents, and that he distributed and administered drugs to other cyclists from 1998 to 2005".
CEO of the Lance Armstrong Foundation Doug Ulman released a statement of support saying the organisation had learned that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency had leveled charges against Lance Armstrong and that he violated its rules throughout his career, based on the testimony of anonymous accusers.
"Regardless of anything anyone says, Lance Armstrong has been one of the most tireless and effective cancer advocates in the world.
His legacy as a cancer advocate and fundraiser is indisputable," Ulman said.
"When other athletes might have kept a cancer diagnosis secret, Lance made a courageous choice to go public. That choice helped spark a revolution in how the world views cancer and its survivors.
"Lance created the Foundation to serve cancer survivors before any of his Tour de France wins. Our foundation has raised nearly $500 million to serve people and families affected by cancer. We help cancer survivors struggling with the financial, emotional and practical challenges of cancer free of charge. And we advocate tirelessly for legislation, policies and funding to further the fight against cancer.
"In our eyes, Lance will always remain a champion. Nothing can shake our faith in him as a leader and trailblazer on behalf of cancer survivors. Our thoughts are with Lance and his family as they face what can only be a very frustrating and difficult time as a result of USADA’s actions," he said.
In a statement on his own website, Armstrong said that "these charges are baseless, motivated by spite and advanced through testimony bought and paid for by promises of anonymity and immunity. Although USADA alleges a wide-ranging conspiracy extended over more than 16 years, I am the only athlete it has chosen to charge.
"USADA’s malice, its methods, its star-chamber practices, and its decision to punish first and adjudicate later all are at odds with our ideals of fairness and fair play."