Lance Armstrong was taken to the woodshed by the USADA yesterday, who submitted mountains of evidence to the Union Cycliste Internationale, the world governing body for cycling.
“The evidence shows beyond any doubt that the US Postal Service Pro Cycling Team ran the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen,” the USADA said in a statement.
They presented 26 witnesses (including 15 riders), lab results, financial statements and emails as a part of their thorough examination of Armstrong’s life and career.
While Armstrong is, at this point, very guilty, the case presents some interesting discussion points.
First, the USADA has not only been acting outside of its jurisdiction during the investigation, but they have also gone far past their own eight-year statute of limitations. The justice Armstrong is now getting is deserved, but at what cost?
Second, what has this accomplished? There have been 13 cases of doping in cycling just this year, even after riders witnessed the USADA hound Armstrong for the last 17 years. Even if all of Armstrong’s stripped titles were given to the second place finisher in each Tour de France, you’d still have a cheating champion.
If all the USADA can ultimately claim is that they publically censured Lance Armstrong, then we have a big problem. The USADA, and other organizations, would be far better off addressing the root of the problem rather than execute public vendettas in the name of justice.
Fortunately, it doesn’t appear that Armstrong’s foundation for cancer awareness has taken a hit. Hopefully Armstrong can throw himself into research and raising money for the remainder of his public life. If that’s all he has at the end of the day, we can call it even.