Former champion cyclist Lance Armstrong has admitted using performance-enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France, Associated Press reported today.
Armstrong was interviewed by US talkshow star Oprah Winfrey today in a pe-recorded special that is to be broadcast on Friday.
AP reported that a source close to the situation had confirmed Armstrong's confession, but spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The American had previously denied using performance-enhancing drugs and has never been proven to have tested positive.
Stephen Swart, Tyler Hamilton, Frankie and Betsy Andreu, David Walsh, Floyd Landis and a host of others will be feeling vindicated today...
The build-up to Lance Armstrong's "interview" with Oprah Winfrey is proving to be a welcome distraction from the sport we love more than any other. Associated Press reports:
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A person with knowledge of the situation says Lance Armstrong has apologized to the staff at his Livestrong cancer foundation. He did so before heading to an interview with Oprah Winfrey.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press because the discussion was private.
Armstrong addressed the staff Monday and said, "I'm sorry." The person said the disgraced cyclist choked up and several employees cried during the session.
The person also said Armstrong apologized for letting the staff down and putting Livestrong at risk but he did not make a direct confession to the group about using banned drugs. He said he would try to restore the foundation's reputation.
Here comes the clincher though:
Armstrong urged the group to continue fighting for the charity's mission of helping cancer patients and their families. After the meeting, Armstrong, his legal team and close advisers gathered at a downtown Austin hotel for the interview.
The Oprah "interview" is shaping up to be a well-managed puff piece, designed to rebuild Armstrong's tattered reputation, and that of Livestrong and his own Foundation. We doubt that Lance Armstrong is about to suddenly come clean, and address all the evidence that has been gathered about his drug-taking.
And we're sceptical about the latest apology. The sincerity or otherwise of it depends on just what Lance Armstrong was apologising for; or "legal team and close advisors" have told him to apologise for.