Armstrong to be stripped of Tour titles
Mat Mackay, WWOS
14:00 AEST Fri Aug 24 2012
Lance Armstrong. (Getty)
A federal judge dismissed Lance Armstrong's lawsuit against the US Anti-Doping Agency. (Getty)

  Have your say on Lance Armstrong.

Lance Armstrong will be stripped of his seven Tour de France titles after announcing he will not fight charges brought by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

Armstrong made the shock announcement in a statement in which he cited a familiar defence, but said he was "finished with this nonsense".

Read Lance Armstrong's full statement

"There comes a point in every man's life when he has to say, 'enough is enough,' the statement read.

"For me, that time is now. I have been dealing with claims that I cheated and had an unfair advantage in winning my seven Tours since 1999.

"Over the past three years, I have been subjected to a two-year federal criminal investigation followed by (USADA CEO) Travis Tygart's unconstitutional witch hunt.

"The toll this has taken on my family, and my work for our foundation and on me leads me to where I am today."

In pictures: Freak or cheat?

Video: Armstrong's inspiring cancer battle

The move by Armstrong paves the way for USADA to strip the 40-year-old of his cycling titles and ban him from competition for life.

The agency confirmed to ninemsn a short time ago that it would be proceeding with the penalties, saying it was a "sad day for all of us who love sport and our athletic heroes".

"This is a heartbreaking example of how the win-at-all-costs culture of sport, if left unchecked, will overtake fair, safe and honest competition," the agency added in a statement.

"For clean athletes, it is a reassuring reminder that there is hope for future generations to compete on a level playing field without the use of performance-enhancing drug".

The agency has always maintained it has overwhelming evidence that Armstrong doped, based on lab results and eyewitness accounts. It is believed that at least three of his former Tour de France teammates were willing to testify against him.

In making his announcement, Armstrong said he would "commit myself to the work I began before ever winning a single Tour de France title: serving people and families affected by cancer, especially those in underserved communities."

Earlier this week, a US federal judge dismissed Armstrong's lawsuit against USADA, despite the athlete's assertion that USADA lacked jurisdiction to pursue a case against him.

Armstrong had also claimed the agency's arbitration process violated his rights under the US constitution. He could have appealed to a higher court.

Do you believe Lance Armstrong is innocent?
If guilty, should he be stripped of his Tour de France titles?

User comments
If he is proven to be a dirty cheat, take every award he has. BUT, show me the proof. Lay out the facts for all to see. Innocent until proven guilty ?....... In my eyes Lance is still the champion
As Lance says he has never once failed a drug test, so where do you draw the line. I fully support and admire his brave decision to give up. Fahy your comments are disgraceful. There is no evidence only suspicion because he was such an outstanding athlete. Usain Bolt is fast, so I guess he must be on some banned substance as well. Good luck Lance, I am a cancer sufferer and my fight is ongoing but I have been inspired by you, and loved your book.
It needs to be noted that USADA is just one countries body and has no authority at all over UCI who are the only body that can take any action against Lance with regards to stripping titles. We must not let Tygart's personal vendetta cast any aspersions on Armstrongs magnificent achievements, and Dino, how long have you been off your medication?
Well done, anti doping agency. You hunted him and hunted him, until an innocent man got tired of fighting.Leave the man alone, he is a true champion, 7 time winner of the Tour de France ad always will be. Jealousy is a curse. Show us the the drug test evidence, there is none. If there was it would of come to light earlier. The former team mates are gunna testify against him? you mean the ones that have failed the drug tests and been suspended, so they must be getting some sort of deal where there suspension is lifted. Funny how the Americans are so against corruption and so full of their constitutional rights, but they are always the ones who break their laws when it suits them. Dogs
Why does the USADA think they can take away something they did not give, the Tour De France body has been awfully quiet on this topic. What is the everwhelming evidence the USADA has, let us all know so we can make an informed decision. Or is this just another case of the USA sticking their collective noses into other peoples business
Lance Armstrong's decision to walk away from constant hassling might open the door for Cadel Evans to claim not one, but the two Yellow Jersey's.
What a full flushing joke.These idiots are looking for a pat on the back and a large funding boost.Its been what,7 years since this marvel won his last tour and been tested and cleared more times than i've had hot dinners,and it's only now they want his scalp.Seems that they need to prove themselves to the world.Why didn't they punish Carl Lewis?He tested positive 3 times and no penalty,what a farce!It's time these sooky lalas found better targets to spend hard earned on instead of selected witch hunts.
Absolutely agree with the action Lance has taken, to hell with the faceless mob. He should just get on with his life. This endless pursuit is nothing more than witch-hunt of the worst kind. They just keep shaking the tree hoping something will fall out of it.
lance we will never believe these charges. don't waste your energy on these people, continue with your good works. you are not a cheat in any way.
You would think considering what he has done previously,7 titles fighting cancer successfully that he would fight this one to.Did he know that were to many witnesses this time & the game was up ?For some time I've thought that the Tour de France was to hard & that most riders have some sort of help. Will cycling do something about the Tour & the like now.However they aren't the only sporting bodies who need a broom through them are they

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