Tag Archives: armstrong

Lance Armstrong given two week deadline extension on co-operation with investigators

Disgraced Armstrong given two week extension on investigation co-operation deadline

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

01:41 GMT, 7 February 2013

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UPDATED:

01:42 GMT, 7 February 2013

The US Anti-Doping Agency have announced Lance Armstrong wants to 'assist in the effort to clean up the sport of cycling' and have given the disgraced cyclist a two-week extension to co-operate with investigators.

Armstrong had been given until yesterday to confess all under oath after admitting to doping during each of his seven Tour de France triumphs in a televised interview with Oprah Winfrey last month.

However, USADA have set a new deadline.

Extension: Lance has two more weeks to co-operate

Extension: Lance has two more weeks to co-operate

Chief executive Travis Tygart said in a statement: 'We have been in communication with Mr. Armstrong and his representatives and we understand that he does want to be part of the solution and assist in the effort to clean up the sport of cycling.

'We have agreed to his request for an additional two weeks to work on details to hopefully allow for this to happen.'

USADA revealed last year that Armstrong had led 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme sport has ever seen'.

The UCI, cycling's world governing body, stripped Armstrong of his seven Tour titles – none of which were reassigned – and he was banned from sport for life.

Armstrong told Winfrey he would 'be the first man through the door' to take part in a truth and reconciliation hearing.

First man: Lance said he would not be the last person 'through the door'

First man: Lance said he would not be the last person 'through the door'

And in an email interview with cyclingnews.com, the American was adamant a truth and reconciliation commission is the only way forward for all endurance sports.

'It's not the best way, it's the only way,' he said.

'As much as I'm the eye of the storm this is not about one man, one team, one director.

'This is about cycling and to be frank it's about ALL endurance sports.'

Armstrong stated the UCI should not be involved in a TRC, believing the World Anti-Doping Agency should lead it.

Asked why WADA and not USADA should run the process, Armstrong said: 'No brainer. This is a global sport not an American one. One thing I'd add – the UCI has no place at the table.

'When I was on speaking terms with ol' Pat McQuaid (the UCI president) many, many months ago I said, 'Pat, you better think bold here. A full-blown, global, TRC is our sport's best solution.' He wanted to hear nothing of it.'

Bradley Wiggins: Liar Lance Armstrong made me so glad I"m clean

Liar Lance made me so glad I'm clean, says Tour de France winner Wiggins

By
Richard Moore

PUBLISHED:

21:59 GMT, 24 January 2013

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UPDATED:

02:38 GMT, 25 January 2013

Sir Bradley Wiggins has revealed how
watching Lance Armstrong's drug confession left him feeling angry, sad
and emotional – but relieved that he will never have to tell his son his
father doped to win the Tour de France.

'I wasn't going to watch it,' said
Wiggins last night, speaking at the Team Sky training camp in Majorca.
'I was determined not to watch it. But then I got home and I watched it
with my seven-year-old son Ben.

'Those initial six questions, the yes-no answers, watching him suddenly cave in after all those years of lying so convincingly . . . there was a lot of anger, a lot of sadness. I was slightly emotional as well. It was difficult to watch. My wife couldn't watch it. She walked out the room.

All smiles: Sir Bradley Wiggins during the Team Sky Media Day in Alcudia, Majorca on Thursday

All smiles: Sir Bradley Wiggins during the Team Sky Media Day in Alcudia, Majorca on Thursday

All smiles: Sir Bradley Wiggins during the Team Sky Media Day in Alcudia, Majorca on Thursday

'It was heartbreaking in some respects for the sport, but then the anger kicks in,' Wiggins continued. 'You're thinking, “What a ****ing a******e”.

'Then I've got to explain to my son what it's all about, that he has won the same race his dad has won. But by the end of the hour and a half I had the best feeling in the world.'

It was a feeling of relief and smugness, said Wiggins, who last year became the first Briton to win the Tour de France.

Confession: Lance Armstrong admitted to doping during his interviews with Oprah Winfrey

Confession: Lance Armstrong admitted to doping during his interviews with Oprah Winfrey

He said: 'When Armstrong started welling up talking about his 13-year-old son asking him what it was all about . . . I never have to have that conversation with my own son. I can tell him his father's won the Tour de France clean and so there was an element of being quite smug.

'By the end, I thought, “You deserve everything you get”, and I felt no sympathy for him at all.

Meet the team: Wiggins with Josh Edmondson and Chris Froome in Mallorca

Meet the team: Wiggins with Josh Edmondson and Chris Froome in Mallorca

Training: Wiggins rides in Port Alcudia

Training: Wiggins rides in Port Alcudia

'I was a fan of Lance. I watched him
win the world championships in 1993 when I was 13, and when he came back
from cancer and won the Tour de France in 1999 I was 19, on the British
track programme, and that was so inspirational.

'And then I never really raced with him in his prime. I raced him at
the Tour when he came back in 2009 and I was fourth and he was third.'

Armstrong told Oprah Winfrey that he was clean in that comeback Tour,
though the US Anti-Doping Agency put the chances of him not doping that
year at 'one in a million'. Wiggins concurs. 'When he said he was upset
about USADA's claim that he doped in 2009 and 2010, I thought, you lying
b*****d,' he said.

'I can still remember going toe-to-toe with him, watching his body language and comparing the man I saw at the top of Verbier on stage 15 to the man I saw at the top of Mont Ventoux on stage 20 a week later, when we were in dope control together. It wasn't the same bike rider.

'I don't believe anything that comes out the guy's mouth any more.'

Team Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford added that Armstrong's confession had put cycling's credibility in the 'last chance saloon'.

He said: 'The sport must never go back to the place it was in the past. Fans must genuinely trust the results.'

Lance Armstrong: Australian library brands his books works of fiction

From inspirational tale to work of fiction: Australian library re-shelves Armstrong books after doping confession

By
Adam Shergold

PUBLISHED:

17:46 GMT, 20 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:46 GMT, 20 January 2013

Lance Armstrong's fall from grace after admitting to using performance-enhancing drugs shows no signs of slowing.

The professional cycling fraternity has shunned him, the sponsors have dropped him and just about everyone else he's ever crossed is about to sue him.

And now, his books – once an inspirational story of how to overcome adversity – have been re-shelved and re-categorised from 'must-read autobiography' to 'fiction.'

Works of fiction: This sign was on display at Manley Library in Sydney, Australia following the Lance Armstrong revelations on the Oprah Winfrey Show at the end of last week (below)

Works of fiction: This sign was on display at Manley Library in Sydney, Australia following the Lance Armstrong revelations on the Oprah Winfrey Show at the end of last week (below)

Confession time: Lance Armstrong is interviewed by Oprah Winfrey

Confession time: Lance Armstrong is interviewed by Oprah Winfrey

Manly Library in Sydney, Australia caused a few smirks after they moved three Armstrong titles this weekend.

A sign at reception read: 'All non-fiction Lance Armstrong titles, including 'Lance Armstrong: Images Of A Champion,' 'The Lance Armstrong Performance Program' and 'Lance Armstrong: World's Greatest Champion,' will soon be moved to the fiction section.'

I wonder how many people will be suddenly very keen to find out what 'The Lance Armstrong Performance Program' involves.

It comes as Armstrong, 41, took to the Oprah Winfrey chat show in the United States to come clean about being at the centre of one of the most sophisticated doping programmes in the history of sport and appealed for forgiveness from the public.

Seventh heaven: Armstrong celebrates winning his final Tour de France title in 2005 - he was stripped of all seven titles after confessing to taking performance-enhancing drugs

Seventh heaven: Armstrong celebrates winning his final Tour de France title in 2005 – he was stripped of all seven titles after confessing to taking performance-enhancing drugs

In a sensational interview, broadcast late last week, Armstrong, the seven-time Tour de France champion, admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs during the most successful part of his career.

But his confession came with a belief that he should be given a second chance to compete.

Today, disgraced former sprinter Ben Johnson said that Armstrong will be quickly forgiven by the American public following his admission.

Johnson, who was stripped of his 100m gold medal from the 1988 Seoul Olympics after testing positive for anabolic steroids, said 'It's going to be fine for him in a few months.'

Disgraced: Sprinter Ben Johnson was stripped of his 100m gold from the 1988 Seoul Olympics after testing positive for banned steroids

Disgraced: Sprinter Ben Johnson was stripped of his 100m gold from the 1988 Seoul Olympics after testing positive for banned steroids

Lance Armstrong "did not come clean in the manner I had expected", reveals Oprah Winfrey

Armstrong 'did not come clean in the manner I had expected', reveals Oprah

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

13:42 GMT, 15 January 2013

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UPDATED:

13:43 GMT, 15 January 2013

Lance Armstrong admitted admitted using performance-enhancing drugs in a TV interview to
be shown on Thursday.

The disgraced cyclist is said to have
confessed in an interview with American TV chat show queen Oprah Winfrey.

Oprah tweeted: ‘I would say (Lance Armstrong) did not come clean in the manner I had expected. It was surprising to me.’

Banned: Disgraced cyclist Armstrong conducted his first interview since being stripped of his seven Tour de France titles with Oprah Winfrey

Banned: Disgraced cyclist Armstrong conducted his first interview since being stripped of his seven Tour de France titles with Oprah Winfrey

The revelation came after Armstrong visited the staff of his charity the Livestrong Foundation at the Texas offices to apologise for putting their work at risk.

Several employees cried when he told them: ‘I’m sorry.’

'He had a private conversation with the staff, who have done the important work of the foundation for many years,' Livestrong Foundation spokeswoman Katherine McLane was quoted as saying by Reuters.

'It was a very sincere and heartfelt expression of regret over any stress that they've suffered over the course of the last few years as a result of the media attention,' she added.

He promised he would try to restore the foundation’s reputation – before meeting his legal team to prepare for the Oprah interview.

Armstrong reportedly spoke to a room
full of about 100 staff members for about 20 minutes, expressing regret
for everything the controversy has put them through.

He told them how much the foundation
means to him and that he considers the people who work there to be like
members of his family. None of the people in the room challenged
Armstrong over his long denials of doping.

Banned: Disgraced cyclist Armstrong conducted his first interview since being stripped of his seven Tour de France titles with Oprah Winfrey

After the interview, Winfrey tweeted: 'Just wrapped with @lancearmstrong More than 2 1/2 hours. He came READY!'

Winfrey
and her crew planned on filming Monday's session at Armstrong's home.
As a result, local and international news crews were camped near the
cyclist's Spanish-style villa before dawn.

Armstrong
still managed to slip away for a run despite the crowds outside his
home. He returned by cutting through a neighbour's yard and hopping a
fence.

Meanwhile, the government of South Australia state said it will seek damages or compensation from Lance Armstrong after his reported confession to Winfrey that he doped during his career.

South Australia Premier Jay Weatherill said the state would seek the repayment of several million dollars in appearance fees paid to Armstrong for competing in the Tour Down Under cycle race in 2009, 2010 and 2011.

Weatherill said reports Armstrong admitted doping during a recorded interview with Winfrey changed the government's view on its entitlement to compensation.

He said Armstrong 'has deceived the cycling community around the world' by repeatedly denying he used performance-enhancing drugs during a career in which he won the Tour de France seven times.

'We'd be more than happy for Mr. Armstrong to make any repayment of monies to us,' Weatherill said.

Shamed: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven tour titles

Shamed: Armstrong has been stripped of his seven tour titles

Weatherill refused to say how much the
South Australian state government paid to Armstrong to secure his
participation in the ProTour race for three-straight years.

Armstrong chose the Australian cycle tour, the first event of the annual ProTour, to make his return to professional cycling in 2009 after a two-year retirement. He also made the six-stage road race his last professional race before his final retirement in 2011.

The South Australian government paid appearance fees to Armstrong to build the profile of the race and promote tourism. That effort was hugely successful and in each of the years Armstrong competed, hundreds of thousands watched the race live and millions more saw it on television.

Armstrong has never tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs and for a decade he strenuously denied doping and resorted to lawsuits to protect his reputation.

The publication of a damning 1,000-page report by the United States Anti-Doping Agency, which placed Armstrong at the center of what it called one of the most sophisticated doping operations in sports, has led to counter-suits against the rider.

Those who had been successfully sued by Armstrong, including Britain's Sunday Times newspaper, are now seeking repayment of the damages they were forced to pay. Others are seeking repayment of sponsorships and prize money paid during Armstrong's career as the world's most famous professional cyclist.

Rory McIlroy signs Nike deal in Abu Dhabi to set him on way to billion dollar prize

Billion dollar Rory! Nike deal sets McIlroy on his way to UK record haul… but Ryder Cup storm clouds threaten his Abu Dhabi party

By
Derek Lawrenson

PUBLISHED:

22:48 GMT, 14 January 2013

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UPDATED:

23:09 GMT, 14 January 2013

Dude, is that your real hair

Watch the first Nike advert featuring both new signing Rory McIlroy and original superstar Tiger Woods.

Rory McIlroy took a major step to becoming the United Kingdom's first billion-dollar sportsman after he was officially unveiled as a Nike athlete.

At a press conference in Abu Dhabi filled with glitz and glamour, the Northern Irishman, 23, signed a $25million-a-year (about 15.5m) contract that, alongside tournament earnings and appearance fees of similar magnitude, could see him break the 10-figure earnings barrier before he finishes his glittering career.

Jack Nicklaus was 46 when he won his last major and the legendary Arnold Palmer is still raking in $20m (about 12.4m) a year in sponsorship despite now being in his eighties.

Just done it: Rory McIlroy has signed a sponsorship deal with Nike that will see him net 155m

Just done it: Rory McIlroy has signed a sponsorship deal with Nike that will see him net 155m

Just done it: Rory McIlroy has signed a sponsorship deal with Nike that will see him net 155m

If McIlroy can avoid the scandals that have affected other Nike athletes such as Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong and keep his form, that gargantuan billion-dollar figure is clearly within range.

McIlroy was welcomed into the fold by fellow Nike superstars Wayne Rooney, Roger Federer and Woods himself. Messages of support from the trio were played on a big screen behind where McIlroy and Cindy Davis, president of Nike Golf, were sitting.

Spectacular: McIlroy's image was projected onto water at a glitzy ceremony in Abu Dhabi on Monday

Spectacular: McIlroy's image was projected onto water at a glitzy ceremony in Abu Dhabi on Monday

Spectacular: McIlroy's image was projected onto water at a glitzy ceremony in Abu Dhabi on Monday

No details of the Nike deal have been revealed but the initial contract is believed to be worth up to $25m a year and could run for a decade. That equates to around $68,000 (over 42,000) a day but McIlroy vowed not to let the staggering sums of money distract him from his game.

Rory the cleaner's son mops up

Read Derek Lawrenson's verdict on the sponsorship deal that everyone is talking about…

'I don't play golf for money, I am well past that,' he said. 'I am a major champion and world No 1, which I have always dreamed of being, and I want to keep on living the dream. If I haven't won another major by the end of this year I am going to be very disappointed.'

McIIroy's megabucks deal heralded what promises to be a momentous week in Abu Dhabi, with Europe's Ryder Cup captain due to be announced on Tuesday.

The Holywood star reiterated his backing for Paul McGinley but there are plenty of whispers that the 15-man Tournament Players' Committee, who have the vote, might go for Scot Colin Montgomerie on home soil at Gleneagles next year.

If that happens, McIlroy might find himself leading a revolt among the men who were at Medinah.

Welcome to the big time: McIlroy joins Tiger Woods in earning a huge sum as the face of Nike's golf division

Welcome to the big time: McIlroy joins Tiger Woods in earning a huge sum as the face of Nike's golf division

FA Cup third round: A view from the sofa

View from the sofa: No naked butler but heroes aplenty as it goes bananas

By
Riath Al-samarrai

PUBLISHED:

23:42 GMT, 6 January 2013

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UPDATED:

00:28 GMT, 7 January 2013

As is so often the case, it was Jeff Stelling who delivered the sentence that best summed up the day. ‘O’Brien is in for Matt Armstrong-Ford, the naked butler who failed a fitness test this morning. He’s become an instant hero.’

It’s just gone 3.17pm and the wise men of Sky Sport’s Soccer Saturday are getting excited. Middlesbrough have won a penalty and Ishmael Miller has stepped up to take it. Liam O’Brien, the stand-in goalkeeper for Hastings, ranked 18th in the Ryman League, makes the save and it stays 0-0.

Instant heroes; new and unusual stories. If it’s not a new story, it’s a good old one. In a nutshell, that’s the ‘magic’ and the ‘charm’ of the FA Cup’s third round. It’s the novelty, the lop-sided match-ups, the possibilities, the temporary seating, the quirks of history. Often, the fixtures serve up a belter, but it’s usually context over content.

Providing the drama: Jeff Stelling and the Soccer Saturday team keep the viewers up to date with the 3pm kick-offs

Providing the drama: Jeff Stelling and the Soccer Saturday team keep the viewers up to date with the 3pm kick-offs

And on Saturday, as always seems to happen on the first weekend of January, there was no shortage of context.

Joe Cole was back at West Ham, restarting his career almost 14 years to the day after making his professional debut for the club in the same competition. Manchester United were once desperate to sign him. Their interest had long since died by the time they arrived at Upton Park.

Bournemouth’s Wes Fogden has overcome a tumour that ate into his spine and he spent months in a body cast. The paper talk is of overcoming adversity, leading into a discussion of Bournemouth’s prospects against Premier League Wigan. Then there’s Hastings again, with puns on 1066 and all that, and Mansfield, whose manager, Paul Cox, got married two days before taking on Liverpool.

Instant hero: Liam O'Brien saves a penalty from Middlesbrough's Ishmael Miller

Instant hero: Liam O'Brien saves a penalty from Middlesbrough's Ishmael Miller

Southampton’s Jack Cork has been saying how desperate he is to match and silence his dad Alan, who won the FA Cup with Wimbledon; Southampton are 4-1 down against Chelsea after an hour. But Fogden goes close for Bournemouth against Wigan, before Eunan O’Kane puts the League One side in front. Non-League Luton are leading against Wolves. Goldberg pulls one back for Hastings.

So far only Brighton have banked what, on paper, is an upset. ITV certainly saw the 2-0 win coming, hence the live coverage.

But then Macclesfield of the Blue Square Premier pull level with Cardiff, the leaders of the Championship. Matthew Barnes-Homer, who has scraped a living playing in the US, Sweden and the Midland Alliance, scores the goal. And then the winner. The gap between the sides is 81 places.

Back on the pitch: Wes Fogden plays for Bournemouth after recovering from a tumor

Back on the pitch: Wes Fogden plays for Bournemouth after recovering from a tumor

‘It’s all gone bananas, Jeff,’ says Soccer Saturday reporter and occasional manager Iain Dowie. Kieron Dyer has scored for QPR in injury time against West Brom. Is that irony or magic Joe Cole looks reborn as West Ham draw 2-2 with Manchester United.

By the close of play on Saturday, there are a couple of fruity upsets — notably Macclesfield over Cardiff and Luton over Wolves — but no genuine giant has been knocked on his backside.

On the phone-ins, some Cardiff and Wigan fans aren’t happy with the changes that their managers made to their respective sides.

But that doesn’t matter so much. Barnes-Homer, Robbie Simpson of Oldham, Brighton’s Andrea Orlandi and Alex Lawless of Luton are instant heroes. ‘Magic,’ as Stelling said.

Hastings goalkeeper Matt Armstrong-Ford delight at reaching FA Cup third round

My best night in football! Hastings goalkeeper delight at reaching FA Cup third round

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UPDATED:

00:04 GMT, 14 December 2012

Hastings goalkeeper Matt Armstrong-Ford spoke of his “best night in football” as the non-league minnows booked an FA Cup third-round trip to Middlesbrough.

The Isthmian League Premier Division side went all the way against Harrogate Town tonight, going to penalties and winning 5-4 in front of over 4,000 fans at the Pilot Field.

Armstrong-Ford was not called upon in the shoot-out as Harrogate`s misses – from Lee Elam and Tom Platt – were wild hacks over the bar, but that did not stop him savouring the moment.

Joy: Hastings players celebrate their dramatic win over Harrogate on penalties

Joy: Hastings players celebrate their dramatic win over Harrogate on penalties

'It`s my best night in football, this makes it all worth it,' he told ESPN.
'It`s the best thing that has happened to me in football. It doesn`t get any better.'

The keeper`s 90th-minute error – he misjudged a cross which allowed Platt to cancel out Lee Carey`s penalty – may well have been costly, but Dee Okojie kept his cool to put them through from the spot.

'It was hard work,' Carey said.

'I dreamed about scoring last night. I told the boys in the car I was going to score. When we go behind, we still believe we can win the game.'

Winning moment: Dee Okojie scored the decisive penalty for Hastings to send them to the third round

Winning moment: Dee Okojie scored the decisive penalty for Hastings to send them to the third round

The Isthmian League minnows will face Championship side Middlesbrough in January

The Isthmian League minnows will face Championship side Middlesbrough in January

Player-manager Sean Ray was a rock-like presence for his side, and he is now dreaming big.

'The character of the players and the desire… Every game we have played we deserved to win. You can`t question their character,' he said.

'This is my first time as a manager in the FA Cup. Only another five rounds to go and we`ll be at Wembley!'

Lance Armstrong doping affair: Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson lands role investigating links with UCI

Baroness Grey-Thompson lands role investigating Armstrong's links with UCI

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UPDATED:

16:42 GMT, 30 November 2012

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson has been named on a three-person panel to assess the Lance Armstrong affair and the role of the International Cycling Union in the scandal.

The UCI in October ratified the sanctions recommended by the United States Anti-doping Agency, who conducted an investigation which concluded Armstrong and his United States Postal Service team ran 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen'.

Allegations of complicity and insider knowledge were levelled at the UCI and its leadership – all of which have been denied – and 11-time Paralympic champion Grey-Thompson forms part of the independent commission set up to establish the facts.

Disgraced: Lance Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles

Disgraced: Lance Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles

Australian John Coates, the president of the International Council of Arbitration for Sport assembled the commission, which is independent of the UCI and will be chaired by former Court of Appeal judge Sir Philip Otton Australian lawyer Malcolm Holmes QC will join Lords peer Grey-Thompson on the panel.

Armstrong did not cooperate with the USADA investigation and has been banned for life and stripped of all results from August 1, 1998, including seven Tour de France titles.

Investigating Armstrong: Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson

Investigating Armstrong: Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson

Lance Armstrong stands down from Livestrong board

Disgraced Armstrong stands down from Livestrong board and 'severs all ties' with charity

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UPDATED:

18:45 GMT, 12 November 2012

Livestrong chairman Jeff Garvey has announced Lance Armstrong had severed all ties with the cancer charity 'to spare the organisation any negative effects as a result of controversy surrounding his cycling career'.

The Texan was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles after an investigation by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) found him guilty of using performance-enhancing drugs.

Armstrong resigned as chairman of the charity on October 17 – Garvey was his replacement – as the scandal intensified and the 41-year-old has now stood down from the board of directors.

Stepping down: Armstrong founded the Livestrong charity

Stepping down: Armstrong founded the Livestrong charity

In a statement, Garvey said: 'Lance Armstrong has chosen to voluntarily resign from the board of directors of the Livestrong Foundation to spare the organisation any negative effects as a result of controversy surrounding his cycling career.

'We are deeply grateful to Lance for creating a cause that has served millions of cancer survivors and their families.

'We are beholden to the Armstrong family for the nearly US dollars 7 million in contributions throughout the Foundation's history.

'Lance Armstrong was instrumental in changing the way the world views people affected by cancer.

'His devotion to serving survivors is unparalleled and for 15 years, he committed himself to that cause with all his heart on behalf of the Livestrong Foundation.

Disgraced: Armstrong was exposed by the USADA

Disgraced: Armstrong was exposed by the USADA

'We are proud of Lance's indelible contributions to the global effort to eradicate cancer and his on-going personal commitment to improving the lives of its survivors.'

Armstrong has kept a low profile in recent weeks but caused a stir on Sunday by posting a picture on Twitter of himself relaxing surrounded by his tainted Tour de France yellow jerseys.

The jerseys were hanging in frames on the walls near an L-shaped sofa, each picked out by an individual lightbulb, with a pair of curtains left open to clearly display the last of them.

Last month, the International Cycling Union (UCI) ratified the sanctions recommended by USADA, who concluded Armstrong and his US Postal team ran 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen'.

All Armstrong's results from August 1, 1998 were expunged from the record books, including his seven consecutive Tour de France 'wins' from 1999 to 2005, and the 41-year-old was banned for life.

Outrage: Armstrong posted a picture of himself on Twitter with his tainted yellow jerseys

Outrage: Armstrong posted a picture of himself on Twitter with his tainted yellow jerseys

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) also announced last week it would not appeal against the sanctions, while the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has opened an investigation which could see Armstrong stripped of his road time-trial bronze medal from the 2000 Games.

Armstrong did not cooperate with the USADA investigation and has always denied wrongdoing although he has since removed the line '7-time Tour de France champion' from his Twitter profile.

The fall-out from USADA's verdict has been extensive, with 11 of Armstrong's former team-mates receiving six-month bans after admitting their own doping offences in the course of their testimonies against him.

South African mountain biker David George, who rode with US Postal from 1999 to 2000, was provisionally suspended on Tuesday after testing positive for the banned blood-booster EPO.

Lance Armstrong doping scandal: UCI complicit, claims sponsor

Sponsor claims that UCI were complicit with Armstrong in covering up doping

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UPDATED:

23:13 GMT, 5 November 2012

Disgraced: Armstrong

Disgraced: Armstrong

Pressure continued to mount on the International Cycling Union (UCI) on Monday with one sponsor claiming the organisation was 'complicit' in sweeping the Lance Armstrong doping scandal under the carpet.

Jaimie Fuller, chairman of the Australian sportswear firm Skins that has ploughed around 10million US dollars into the UCI over the last five years, says the scandal has caused reputational damage to the sponsors.

The firm has served a legal notice on the UCI claiming 2million dollars (1.25m) in compensation.

Fuller said: 'This is a ground-breaking move and it's one of those situations that could become case law for the future.

'When a sport is in trouble you look to
the international federation to help it through. It's a pretty rare
situation where the international federation is actually complicit in
what was going on.'

Fuller also claimed that UCI president
Pat McQuaid and his predecessor and honorary president Hein Verbruggen
needed to accept responsibility for the failure to deal with Armstrong,
who was last month stripped of his seven Tour de France titles.

'These two gentleman have sat at the top of world cycling for 22 years and they need to be accountable for what they did and did not do,' said Fuller.

Meanwhile, British cyclist David Millar says the UCI need to make a full apology.

Millar told the Guardian:
'The UCI need to be very careful, because the momentum is rolling too
fast for them to control it. Just as with Lance Armstrong, we'll reach
another tipping point soon. I sense the same looming crash with the UCI –
unless they act decisively.

'I
don't think they realise what everyone needs is immediate action.
They're trying to go through the usual sports politics way of trying to
ride this out until people forget about it. These are career sports
politicians. But they cannot evade this any longer. They have to act
quickly or they're going to face a total revolt and they'll be out
anyway.

Under pressure: Millar demanded a full apology

Under pressure: Millar demanded a full apology

'Now there is a
public awakening and the UCI will be in real trouble unless they make a
full apology. There seems to be some unbreakable alliance between
McQuaid and Verbruggen. Pat needs to cut that cord and move forward. He
needs to wake up to the fact that some revolutions become unstoppable.'

McQuaid and Verbruggen did not respond to requests to comment on Fuller's claims when contacted.

The UCI later released a statement in which it stated steps it has taken since the Armstrong affair became public, including setting up an independent commission to examine the issues raised.

The statement read: 'The UCI can confirm that it has received a letter from the chairman of Skins International Trading AG.

'In the years that Skins have been a sponsor, since 2008, cycling has been a completely different sport from what it was during the period 1998-2005, when tests for EPO did not exist.

'Since the dark period of Lance Armstrong, cycling has been a pioneer in the fight against doping in sport under the leadership of the UCI and this role has been recognised by WADA. For example, it was the UCI that first introduced the urinary EPO test, the homologous blood transfusion test and the Athlete Biological Passport programme.

Fallout: Armstrong has been stripped of all seven of his Tour de France

Fallout: Armstrong has been stripped of all seven of his Tour de France

'As a result, today's riders are subject to the most innovative and effective anti-doping procedures and regulations in sport.

'Today, cycling has enjoyed a huge boost in visibility and popularity, as was apparent at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

'The UCI is determined to turn around this painful episode in the history of our sport. We will take whatever actions are deemed necessary by the independent commission and we will put cycling back on track.

'While we understand the concerns expressed by Skins, the UCI is determined to work hand in hand with all cycling's stakeholders towards the same goal, which is to safeguard the integrity and future wellbeing of the sport.

'The UCI has listened to the world's reaction to the Lance Armstrong affair and the USADA report and has taken decisive steps in response to the grave concerns raised, including setting up a fully independent commission.

'The UCI is determined that this independent commission will just be the start of the process and nothing will be off the agenda.'