Fellow riders back Armstrong in wake of USADA ban
Washington, Aug 26 (ANI): Lance Armstrong received plenty of support from fellow riders after being given a lifetime professional cycling ban by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
The USADA said it would strip Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles, after the American decided not to fight the doping charges.
At the Spanish Vuelta, riders including former rival and teammate Alberto Contador joined ex-Armstrong coach Johan Bruyneel in offering support.
"I think he was a cyclist who always showed such strength, great intelligence and spectacular physical conditioning. We should wait and see what happens at the close before passing judgment," CBS News quoted Contador, as saying, who edged Armstrong for his second Tour title in the first year of his comeback in 2009.
Bruyneel called Armstrong a victim of an "unjust" legal case.
"I'm disappointed for Lance and for cycling in general that things have reached a stage where Lance feels that he has had enough and is no longer willing to participate in USADA's campaign against him," Bruyneel wrote on his personal website.
"Lance has never withdrawn from a fair fight in his life, so his decision today underlines what an unjust process this has been," he continued.
The International Cycling Union (UCI) said it was still awaiting USADA's explanation before deciding whether it would take any action against Armstrong, the report said. The UCI said the code requires this in cases "where no hearing occurs."
If Armstrong is officially stripped of his titles, German cyclist Jan Ullrich could be promoted to champion in three of those years, it added. (ANI)
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