News24

WADA slams Lance's 'PR stunt'

2013-01-18 11:18

Melbourne - World Anti-Doping Agency president John Fahey on Friday branded Lance Armstrong's doping confession a "controlled public relations" stunt that revealed nothing new.

VIDEO: Lance Armstrong confesses to doping

Health24: The dangers of blood doping

As influential South Australian Senator Nick Xenophon threatened legal action to force the state government to reveal how much it paid Armstrong to ride in the Tour Down Under, Fahey attacked both Armstrong and world cycling body UCI.

Fahey told the Fox News Australia television station that all the 41-year-old Armstrong did in his interview with Oprah Winfrey was confirm details of his doping that were already public knowledge.

"There's nothing new from my point of view," Fahey said. "All he did was affirm what the US Anti-Doping Agency had put out in a very substantial and irrefutable judgement some months ago - that this man had taken all sorts of substances for performance purposes.

"He denied that until this point, but there was little doubt he was doing that, and all he did was confirm that today in a very controlled manner."

Fahey was especially damning of Armstrong's choice of forum to confess, saying he should have appeared under oath at an "appropriate tribunal" where he could be cross examined.

"Where he would have to name names, tell of the officials, the entourage, who supplied the drugs, when, where, and which riders were associated," Fahey said.

He reiterated that WADA would not take part in the UCI's independent commission into Armstrong's doping as it believed the terms of reference were not broad enough.

"They are focused on, it seems, trying to absolve any role UCI might have had with Armstrong," he said. "They've never come to us to discuss the terms of reference or to get any advice from us at all.

"I don't think they're sincere about trying to clean up their sport when they're going down this particular path, which I believe will lead them nowhere."

Xenophon, who sits as an independent in the Australian Senate, said the South Australian Government should now make public just how much it paid the American to ride in the Tour Down Under for three years from 2009-11.

The fees are believed to amount to several million dollars, but South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill has refused to disclose the exact amount.

"A court should have regard to Armstrong's confession and how that would work against the commercial-in-confidence argument," Xenophon said.

"Releasing details of the taxpayer funds paid to Armstrong couldn't possibly undermine the event in any way."

Earlier this week Weatherill said the government would not reveal how much Armstrong was paid because it would indicate to others how much it was prepared to spend to support major events.

He said the government was protecting its own interests, not Armstrong's, by keeping the figure secret.

Armstrong used the event, which begins in Adelaide on Monday, to launch his comeback to professional cycling in 2009.

On Thursday's Oprah show, the disgraced cycling legend admitted that his seven Tour de France titles were fuelled by an array of drugs.

"And I'm sitting here today to acknowledge that and to say I'm sorry for that," said Armstrong, who kept any emotions in check as he described years of cheating, lying, and attacking those who had the temerity to doubt him.

"I view this situation as one big lie that I repeated a lot of times," he said.

AFP

Comments
  • sheamus.drager - 2013-01-18 11:37

    So now it's not enough to publicly admit to doping, but you have to "out" all your friends as well. Robbie Hunter said on radio today, that he suspected that half the peleton, at the time of Armstrong, was juiced. Anti drug people like WADA and USADA will not be satisfied until Armstrong is crucified in the public square.

      werner.nel.984786 - 2013-01-18 12:57

      @Sheamus. The most serious of all allegations are that the UCI found drugs in his system, called him up and told him about it. Then told him how the tests are done and how to beat the tests, afterwards Armstrong made a substantial donation to the UCI. Have you ANY idea how far reaching this is, if it is true? It would be like the Australian Cricket board hiding a positive drug test of Shane Warne.... oh, wait that did happen,

  • chiepner - 2013-01-18 11:44

    Off coarse it is. This way he doesn’t have to forfeit his rights and get interrogated by USADA or WASA in manners that resemble a cold war interrogation. This way he can come clean without being used as an example by WADA and USADA to also try and promote their little agendas and Nazi like by laws and in laws. This way he has some amount of control on how this information gets to the public and its not left at the sole discretion of entrust worthy WADA and USADA officials who is much more inclined to promote themselves and degrade him even further. Do you seriously blame him for choosing to do it this way?

      francoisjacques.malan - 2013-01-18 12:36

      You make it sound like USADA are the bad guys, they are the heroes! Lance is a nobody! Why would you defend him?

  • Clintleeh - 2013-01-18 11:47

    Off coarse it is. This way he doesn’t have to forfeit his rights and get interrogated by USADA or WASA in manners that resemble a cold war interrogation. This way he can come clean without being used as an example by WADA and USADA to also try and promote their little agendas and Nazi like by laws and in laws. This way he has some amount of control on how this information gets to the public and its not left at the sole discretion of entrust worthy WADA and USADA officials who is much more inclined to promote themselves and degrade him even further. Do you seriously blame him for choosing to do it this way?

  • sarelbrune.pretorius - 2013-01-18 12:04

    First, everyone was on his case cause he denied it, now that he confessed everyone is again on his case, what do people want.

      jacques.walker.16 - 2013-01-18 15:44

      The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.....

  • art.brigg - 2013-01-18 12:12

    Sorry, no sympathy - you reap what you sow.

  • Jeremy - 2013-01-18 12:29

    Oh give him a break! He's confessed on public TV in an interview that will be seen around the world. What more do you want? I suspect the drug use goes a lot further than Lance Armstrong. Maybe the best thing would be to simply scrap all the Tour de France results for the past 15 years - because no doubt all the top competitors were doing the same as Armstrong!

  • traceyannlee - 2013-01-18 12:30

    Everyone is trying to milk this for as much of their own publicity as possible. Whether Senator Nick Xenophon / the Australian Govt / Tour Down Under Organising Committee care to admit it or not - when Lance Armstrong entered a race - and it was advertised / public knowledge - the entry numbers were greatly increased as were the number of spectators (confirmed by many race organizers online). So they benefitted financially from his attendance at the time - irrespective of whether he was on drugs or not. Pocketing prize money whilst taking drugs is a separate issue. And even if his remorse is genuine (only Lance & God know this), the media will sadly still crucify him. Every human being has the right to apologise and to try make amends, but every journalist seems to think they know the whole story and thousands of people on the Internet seem to think they have the right to say whatever they like about it based on a few newspaper headlines they have seen ... Reminds me of our poor Hansie Cronje - and now a witness has admitted to lying under pressure from the lawyers who wanted to "nail him" ! I can only pray for Lance and his Family. What ever happened to compassion ??? (And I was one of his biggest supporters so I too am disappointed in him but surely there has to be a limit to this hate speech)

      johan.mostert.967 - 2013-01-18 13:47

      He made his bed, he must sleep in it.

  • john.comyn.18 - 2013-01-18 12:54

    Who gives a hoot how much South Australia paid Armstrong in appearance money. They got the milage they were looking for at the time. How the .... were they supposed to know he was doping! He road in the Argus as well and he was a big hit here and at the same time raised funds for cancer. It seems every man and his dog feels cheated.

  • cherri.pye.5 - 2013-01-18 12:55

    People are peed off with this loser because despite all the evidence, he continued lying. I feel nothing for the arrogant swine, he deserves all the flak he is getting.

  • simon.taylor.507464 - 2013-01-18 13:10

    Everyone is now on the band wagon trying to get appearance money back from Lance, but at the time of his appearances all these companies benefited!! So why ask for the money back when they benefited by using him. Are they going to reimburse all the people who purchased tickets to these events?

  • simon.taylor.507464 - 2013-01-18 13:10

    Everyone is now on the band wagon trying to get appearance money back from Lance, but at the time of his appearances all these companies benefited!! So why ask for the money back when they benefited by using him. Are they going to reimburse all the people who purchased tickets to these events?

  • markie.mark.16547 - 2013-01-18 13:11

    It is sad that Lance Armstrong who was hailed not only as a cycling icon, but for his bravery to combat cancer, had to tarnish the hopes of those who once idolized him. If he wants to do the honorable thing and come clean, than it would be proper for him to expose everyone within "that circle of cheaters" and to avoid "not being trusted and pardoned" by the sport and followers who once believed in him.

  • markie.mark.16547 - 2013-01-18 13:18

    We must be fair in our position against cheating. The entire world's attention was concentrated on golfer Tiger Woods when he brought infidelity into his marriage. He went through hell which affected both his personal and golf, simply put the public was unforgiving towards him. Here is Lance Armstrong, why should he be treated any different by having his sins confessed and cleared by Rev. Oprah Winfrey

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