Lance Armstrong has no regrets for his use of anabolic steroids, growth hormone and EPO.
Lance Armstrong, the American cyclist who won seven Tour de France titles before admitting to doping, said that he “wouldn’t change a thing” about his decision to use prohibited performance-enhancing drugs.
Armstrong defended his use of PEDs by insisting that there was no other option for a cyclist who wanted to win. The comments were made in a recent interview with MIke Tirico scheduled to air on NBC Sports Network on May 29, 2019.
“We did what we had to do to win. It wasn’t legal,” Armstrong said, “but I wouldn’t change a thing — whether it’s losing a bunch of money, going from hero to zero.”
Doping is necessary to be the best in sports.
Armstrong knew what he had to do to be a champion. And he did it.
“I knew there were going to be knives at this fight,” Armstrong said. “Not just fists. I knew there would be knives. I had knives, and then one day, people start showing up with guns. That’s when you say, do I either fly back to Plano, Texas, and not know what you’re going to do? Or do you walk to the gun store? I walked to the gun store. I didn’t want to go home.”
Armstrong had already won his seven Tour de France titles before he finally admitted using PEDs throughout his career in a January 2013 interview with Oprah Winfrey. Armstrong acknowledged, for the first time, that he benefited from the use of blood transfusions, erythropoietin (EPO), testosterone and human growth hormone.
Armstrong’s admission came after the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) accused him of doping and published detailed testimonies of former teammates who turned against him. USADA gave Armstrong a lifetime suspension as punishment for his long-term history of doping.
Armstrong was unceremoniously stripped of practically ever professional cycling title he ever won by the international cycling body, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI). He was also forced to pay a $5 million dollar settlement after the United States government sued him for fraud.
Armstrong did acknowledge learning some lessons from his experience. He recognized that it wasn’t just his doping that made him the target of USADA. It was the lengths to which he adamantly denied using PEDs. Armstrong was relentless in attacking and bullying friends, fellow cyclists and journalists who dared to suggest he used PEDs.
In retrospect, Armstrong learned that it was this behavior that hastened his downfall. He believes he could have gotten away with it all if he didn’t act like such an asshole.
“I don’t get investigated and sanctioned if I don’t act the way I acted. If I just doped and didn’t say a thing, none of that would have happened. None of it. I was begging for, I was asking for them to come after me. It was an easy target.”
Gleeson, S. (May 24, 2019). Lance Armstrong ‘wouldn’t change a thing’ on doping before ‘most colossal meltdown’. Retrieved from usatoday.com/story/sports/cycling/2019/05/24/lance-armstrong-wouldnt-change-thing-doping-scandal/1219465001/