European cycling federations welcome ban on Lance Armstrong

Updated: 22 October 2012 19:04 IST

European cycling federations on Monday welcomed an International Cycling Union decision to ban Lance Armstrong for life and scrub his record, including a record seven straight Tour de France titles.

European cycling federations welcome ban on Lance Armstrong

Paris:

European cycling federations on Monday welcomed an International Cycling Union decision to ban Lance Armstrong for life and scrub his record, including a record seven straight Tour de France titles.


The UCI said it would not contest sanctions already handed down by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), stripping the cancer survivor of all of his results since August 1998 and earning him a ban for life.

Tour of Spain organiser Javier Guillen told AFP in Madrid that he believed the outcome showed that no cyclist, not even one with Armstrong's reputation, was above the law.

"Events as serious as that can only have the consequences they have had," Guillen said. "So I feel the reaction of the UCI sits properly with the seriousness of the facts.

"We now have to stress that nobody is above the law and it is time to write a new page for cycling, as I hope this affair marks the turning of the page for the old cycling."

Guillen noted that it was difficult to see how Armstrong's wins could be re-attributed to another rider, as many of those who made the podium in the era when the Texan reigned supreme have also been implicated in the doping web.

But he said he was convinced that "cycling can and must come back from this affair".

He added: "We are talking about an affair which, although in recent memory, already belongs to the cycling of the past. Thanks to the anti-doping fight we have already changed mentalities.

"We must remain on this track but I think that, yes, cycling can survive this."

Belgian Cycling Federation head Tom Van Damme told broadcaster VRT that "if you have read the (USADA) dossier then this is the only verdict.

"For a good while now the UCI has been accused from all sides -- doubtless wrongly" of having somehow gone along with Armstrong, amid claims he donated cash to the organisation's anti-doping effort to allegedly cover-up a positive test.

Van Damme said the UCI now had to bolster trust in its procedures to restore confidence.

"New measures against doping are necessary. Certain doctors in the peloton must be banned so cycling can make a fresh start," he added.

German Cycling Federation president Rudolf Scharping also welcomed the UCI ruling.

"The UCI decision is logical in the face of the evidence. The main thing is that the work carried out (against doping) during the 'dirty decade' (from the mid 1990s through Armstrong's Tour de France successes up to 2005) be completed," he added.



Topics : Cycling
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