Press Esc to close

Armstrong's dirty legacy will haunt the cyclists

PARIS, June 27, 2013, Reuters: 22:06 IST

Tour de France century

The spectre of Lance Armstrong’s dirty legacy will haunt the 100th edition of the Tour de France even though cycling has already started its much-needed transformation.

While riders have been distancing themselves from the American and what he has come to represent, at the forefront of fans' and pundits' minds will be the fact it is the first Tour since Armstrong admitted to doping his way to his seven titles from 1999-2005.

However, American Andrew Talansky, one of several US pros who have grown up watching Armstrong effortlessly sprint up the French mountains, believes it is now safe to be enthusiastic about cycling. "The first thing I point out to people who want to say 'why can we believe in cycling now?' is that now you have guys like (Frenchman) Thibaut Pinot who on his first year on the Tour is top 10," Garmin-Sharp rider Talansky had said earlier this season.

Talansky's team-mate David Millar, a repentant ex doper believes the sport's doping culture is the new generation's burden -- not something they perpetuate.
"It makes them more angry than anything else to have to deal with the mistakes of another generation," he said. "I think it's more the case of the shift already happened.

"We educate our young riders that they can talk about this, we never gag them," he explained. But not every team is as comfortable talking publicly about cycling's doping past as the Garmin-Sharp team. Earlier in the season, BMC riders were instructed not to answer questions containing the name of Lance Armstrong. "A question that includes Lance Armstrong's name is not a relevant one for any of the BMC Racing team riders or managers during Paris-Nice. This was mandated by president/general manager Jim Ochowicz," a BMC representative wrote to Reuters in March.

The perception of cheats within the sport is changing too. While Frenchman Christophe Bassons pulled out of the 1999 Tour saying he had been bullied by Armstrong for speaking up against doping, those who get caught are now being castigated by a large part of the peloton.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) volunteers taking...

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) volunteers taking...

Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa, Chief of the Air Staff...

Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa, Chief of the Air Staff...

SUCI activists stage a protest rally against State...

SUCI activists stage a protest rally against State...

Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones performs during the...

Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones performs during the...

Mime artist Ujjal Kar gets ready to perform as Charlie Chaplin...

Mime artist Ujjal Kar gets ready to perform as Charlie Chaplin...

Acid attack survivor Mohi walks the ramp along with...

Acid attack survivor Mohi walks the ramp along with...

People buying Sugar Canes in a market for upcoming...

People buying Sugar Canes in a market for upcoming...

Britain's Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, arrives to speak at the Chatham...

Britain's Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, arrives to speak at the Chatham...

Actress Katerina Lehou as high priestess, passes the Olympic Flame onto...

Actress Katerina Lehou as high priestess, passes the Olympic Flame onto...

Tamil Nadu coach L Balaji with R Ashwin at BKC...

Tamil Nadu coach L Balaji with R Ashwin at BKC...

Like us on Facebook

Copyright 2017, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523
Powered by Yodasoft Technologies Pvt. Ltd.