Lance Armstrong chronology

2012-10-22 13:30

Washington - Chronology of Lance Armstrong's career and doping accusations that on Monday led to the confirmation of a lifetime ban for the US cycling icon and the loss of his record seven Tour de France titles:

GALLERY: Lance Armstrong highs and lows

1992: After competing in the Barcelona Olympics, Armstrong turns professional. Finishes last in his first pro race, the Clasica de San Sebastian.

1993: Wins the world championship, the USPRO championship and a stage in his first Tour de France.

1996: Enters the year as the top-ranked cyclist in the world. In October, he undergoes surgery and chemotherapy to treat testicular cancer that has spread to his lungs and brain.

1997: Announces formation of a charitable foundation to benefit cancer research and resumes training.

1998: Returns to racing, wins Tour de Luxembourg, the Rheinland-Pfalz Rundfahrt in Germany and the Cascade Classic in Oregon.

1999: Wins first Tour de France title riding for US Postal Service team. Becomes just second American to win the Tour.

2000: Wins second Tour de France title. Publishes "It's Not About the Bike" about his return from cancer.

2001: Wins third Tour de France title.

2002: Wins fourth Tour de France title.

2003: Wins fifth Tour de France title.

2004: Weeks before the start of the Tour, Armstrong is accused of taking performance-enhancing drugs in a book written by David Walsh and Pierre Ballester. Wins sixth Tour de France title.

2005: Announces in April he will retire from pro cycling after the Tour. Wins seventh Tour de France title.

In August, French sports newspaper L'Equipe reports tests on six urine samples allegedly taken from Armstrong during the 1999 Tour and frozen were positive for blood-boosting erythropoietin (EPO). Armstrong maintains he has never taken performance-enhancing drugs.

2006: Armstrong is cleared of doping allegations that stemmed from a 1999 drug test. Report states re-testing didn't meet scientific standards. In July, Floyd Landis wins the Tour but is stripped of his title after failing a drug test.

2007: Lance Armstrong Foundation marks its 10th anniversary and pays out $7.5 million in grants.

2008: On September 9, Armstrong announces his intention to return to professional cycling.

2009: On March 23, Armstrong crashes in the first stage of the Vuelta a Castilla y León in Spain and breaks his collarbone. He resumes training four days after surgery. In April, the AFLD, France's anti-doping agency, accuses Armstrong of failing to cooperate fully with a drug tester. He denies the accusation. Armstrong finishes third in the Tour de France.

2010: In May, Landis admits he was using performance-enhancing drugs when he rode on the US Postal Service team and accused team members, including Armstrong, of also using performance-enhancing drugs. Armstrong denies the allegations.

In September, Betsy Andreu, wife of former Armstrong team-mate Frankie Andreu, said she spoke to a federal agent investigating Armstrong and other cyclists. Betsy Andreu has claimed that Armstrong admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs in a hospital room in 1996 while battling cancer. Armstrong denies the allegation.

2011: In January, a Sports Illustrated magazine article quotes Armstrong's 1995 teammate Stephen Swart as saying Armstrong was "the instigator" for some team members to use EPO. Armstrong's lawyer says the allegation is false.

After competing in Australia's Tour Down Under, Armstrong announces his retirement from competitive cycling in February.

In May, former team-mate Tyler Hamilton tells CBS News that he and Armstrong had taken EPO together during the 1999, 2000 and 2001 Tours de France.

2012: In February, US federal prosecutors drop a criminal investigation into Armstrong and other cyclists without bringing charges.

On June 29, the US Anti-Doping Agency officially charges Armstrong with doping and trafficking of drugs, and suspends him from competing.

In July, Armstrong files a lawsuit in federal court in Texas against the USADA, but a judge threw it out the same day. One day later, Armstrong refiles the lawsuit.

On August 20, a federal judge dismisses Armstrong's lawsuit, leaving him three days to decide if he would fight USADA's charges through arbitration.

On August 23, Armstrong says he won't take his case to arbitration. USADA chief Travis Tygart says Armstrong will be stripped of all of his results dating back to August 1, 1998 and banned from cycling for life.

On October 10, USADA submits its report and findings to the International Cycling Union and unveils the evidence collected in its probe of Armstrong and the US Postal team, including testimony from 11 former Armstrong team-mates.

On October 17: Embattled Armstrong steps down as chairperson of cancer charity Livestrong as sponsors Nike, Trek, Anheuser-Busch and others dump endorsement deals with him.

On October 22: world cycling's governing body confirm USADA ban. Stripped of Tour de France victories and other career wins.

Written in a more conversational style than a typical legal document, the USADA report lays out in chronological order, starting in 1998 and running through 2009:

- Multiple examples of Armstrong using multiple drugs, including the blood-boosting hormone EPO, citing the "clear finding" of EPO in six blood samples from the 1999 Tour de France that were retested. UCI concluded those samples were mishandled and couldn't be used to prove anything. In bringing up the samples, USADA said it considers them corroborating evidence that isn't even necessary given the testimony of its witnesses.

- Testimony from Tyler Hamilton, Floyd Landis and George Hincapie, all of whom say they received EPO from Armstrong.

- Evidence of the pressure Armstrong put on the riders to go along with the doping programme.

- What Jonathan Vaughters called "an outstanding early warning system regarding drug tests." One example came in 2000, when Hincapie found out there were drug testers at the hotel where Armstrong's team was staying. Aware Armstrong had taken testosterone before the race, Hincapie alerted him and Armstrong dropped out of the race to avoid being tested, the report said.

Though she didn't testify, Armstrong's ex-wife, Kristin, is mentioned 30 times in the report.

In one episode, Armstrong allegedly asks her to wrap banned cortisone pills in foil to hand out to his team-mates.

What former team-mates of Lance Armstrong told the US Anti-Doping Agency during their investigation into doping in cycling:

Armstrong team-mate for parts of nine seasons (1992-1996, 1998-2002). Retired from cycling in 2000. Admitted doping. Said he over overheard Armstrong in 1996 acknowledge use of EPO, testosterone, human growth hormone, steroids and cortisone.

Armstrong team-mate for four seasons (2002 - 2005). Said U.S. Postal team doctors and staff gave him banned drugs.

A team-mate of Armstrong for one season (2005). Admitted doping. Said team supplied him with drugs, including EPO.

Armstrong team-mate for four seasons (1998-2001) and winner of 2004 Olympic gold medal of which he was later stripped. Admitted doping. Said he saw Armstrong take EPO and testosterone during 1999 Tour de France and testosterone in 2000. Said he received blood transfusions with Armstrong during 2000 Tour de France and Armstrong gave him EPO in 1999 and 2001.

Armstrong team-mate for 11 seasons (1994-1996, 1998-2005) and only cyclist to ride with Armstrong in all seven Tour de France victories. Admitted doping. Said he was on blood doping program from 2001-2005 and knew Armstrong was as well. Said he was aware Armstrong was using EPO, testosterone and blood transfusions. Once alerted Armstrong to presence of drug testers before a race in Spain; Armstrong dropped out of race.

Armstrong team-mate for three seasons (2002-2004). Won Tour de France in 2006, but lost title after testing positive for testosterone. Admitted doping. Said he received testosterone from Armstrong in 2002, EPO from him in 2002 and 2003 and saw Armstrong use EPO in 2004. Said he received blood transfusions with Armstrong at 2002 and 2003 Tours de France.

Team-mate of Armstrong for five seasons (2001-2002, 2009-2011). Admitted doping. Said Armstrong told him in 2009 he was using middle man to continue to work with team consultant Dr Michele Ferrari.

Armstrong team mate for five seasons (1998-2003). Admitted doping. Said he was told by Armstrong his standing with team depended on following team doping program. Said saw Armstrong's wife, Kristen, give cortisone pills to riders at 1998 World Championships.

Team-mate of Armstrong for two seasons (1998-1999). Said he saw Armstrong inject EPO in 1998.

Armstrong team-mate for four seasons (2001-2004). Said US Postal Service team director Johan Bruyneel and team doctor Luis Garcia del Moral introduced him to doping.


  • scottdavies123 - 2012-10-11 10:36

    The issue is that if they strip him of his titles, do we REALLY think that the person finishing 2 and 3 etc are guilt free? If you look at how results have SPIKED 10 odd years ago and then in the last few years (when doping testing has improved and become stricter) have dropped off again, it indicates widespread doping amongst all teams. So eg Contador got stripped of his win and it was given to Schleck who PROBABLY also was doping based on the results. If you aren't doping, you cannot compete. That's my belief on this saga.

      janet.groenewald.9 - 2012-10-11 12:01

      @Scooterza. Contador was stripped of his titel as was Floyd Landis. So therefore Lance must also be stripped of his titles. What makes him better or mor special that the rest. All cheats are stipped off their titles in any sport.

  • bruce.williams.1044186 - 2012-10-11 10:44

    Lance Armstrong USED to be my hero!! What a prick!

  • nel.andre - 2012-10-11 13:21

    Dont be knobs. There is no proof that he as doping, just his word against other peoples. Until there is hard core evidence then he can judged and stripped, but until that happens, leave the oke alone. FFS

      Mark - 2012-10-11 13:56

      So if I see you shoot someone and testify to that, this is not evidence enough (if you say you didn't) and that there must be hard core evidence? Like a video perhaps? And what if 10 other people testfy they also saw you pull the trigger?

      dick.oliemans - 2012-10-11 15:06

      Did you read the report?? Does not look like it.. How much more proof do you need!!!

      leon.lemaitre.9 - 2012-10-12 18:53

      Andre, affidavits ARE evidence, how much more evidence do you need, ELEVEN ex teammates testifying against him, plus an old sample, previously tested negative, later tested positive. Come on! Open your eyes and your mind, the man is the biggest cheat in sporting history, and the biggest liar, he doesn't have the balls/brains to see the writing on the wall and come clean! Awaywith the fool!

  • johan.jacobs.5680 - 2012-10-11 14:13

    From Hero to Zero.

  • alongman - 2012-10-12 12:34

    I think it's clear that it certainly wasn't about the bike.

  • jan.vos.353 - 2012-10-12 12:39

    Lance will always be THE HERO. Cycling used to be a performance enhancing sport where 90% of the field used it. Let's be honnest, to drive 4000km on a cycle like the Tour's cyclists does is already an achievement, with or without the drugs. Go Lance, I'll alwayssupport you! Anycase, to which other doper do they want to give your wins.....In Afrikaans you call it "Suur Druiwe" because they couldn't do, and nobody ever will do what you have done. You get one Lance and one Bruce Fordyce in life.

      leon.lemaitre.9 - 2012-10-12 18:56

      I am not a huge fan of Fordyce, but it is a huge insult to him to mention the big cheat and liar Armstrong in the same breath!

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