Fahey praises USADA exposure of Armstrong drug taking

Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:23pm EST
 
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By John Mehaffey

LONDON (Reuters) - World Anti-Doping Agency president John Fahey praised on Tuesday the U.S. investigation which led to cyclist Lance Armstrong losing his seven Tour de France titles based on evidence which did not include a positive dope test.

Armstrong finally confessed in a television interview last month that he had doped in each of the Tour victories after the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) produced evidence it said proved he was a drugs cheat.

"While the ramifications of USADA's impressively thorough investigation into Mr. Armstrong are still being played out, we must not let ourselves forget the fact that this is an individual who masterminded one of the most systematic and widespread doping frauds in the history of sport," Fahey told a WADA media symposium at a London hotel.

"It is not an excuse to say that other riders were doping and therefore I also had to cheat. It is not an excuse to say that the rigorous demands of the sport make it necessary to take performance-enhancing substances.

"It is not an excuse to say that riders in the Tour de France have been seeking an edge ever since the race was founded 100 years ago.

"The reality is that Mr. Armstrong cheated for more than a decade, bullied others into cheating, bullied those who would dare to expose his cheating, and to this day continues to manipulate the facts for his own benefit."

Fahey told a question-and-answer session that the International Cycling Union (UCI) had again called for a truth and reconciliation commission to examine its troubled sport after a series of embarrassing drugs scandals.

The UCI's credibility took a further blow when it disbanded a three-person independent commission set up to investigate whether or not the world governing body had helped Armstrong to conceal his drug-taking without sending it a single document.   Continued...

 
World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) President John Fahey looks on before the WADA Media Symposium at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne in this February 27, 2008 file photo. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/Files