Paris - Tour de France organiser Christian
Prudhomme said on Thursday that disgraced rider Lance Armstrong, who was
stripped of his seven Tour titles because of doping, "was already in the
Prudhomme added that it was a surprise that Armstrong had
given a television interview, to be broadcast at 04:00 (SA time) on Friday, in
which he reportedly admitted doping.
"No one could have imagined
only a few weeks ago that Lance Armstrong would make his confession
publicly, that he would confess in public to having been doped," he
"It's obviously something very important but I can't say
more than that, I don't know more than you. I don't know what he'll say.
For us, Lance Armstrong is already in the past."
International Cycling Union (UCI) late last year effectively erased
Armstrong from the cycling history books when it decided not to appeal
sanctions imposed on the Texan rider by the United States Anti-Doping
A damning USADA report, including hundreds of
pages of eyewitness testimony, emails, financial records and laboratory
analysis of blood samples, said Armstrong helped orchestrate the most
sophisticated doping programme in the history of sport. In his
first interview since Armstrong was shorn of his Tour titles, recorded
on Monday with Oprah Winfrey, the US television icon said she believed "the
most important questions" were asked and that Armstrong provided
answers "that people around the world have been waiting to hear".
choice of Winfrey as a confessor is a stunning reversal for a man who
was notoriously aggressive in denying doping accusations for more than a
decade, vilifying those who challenged him.