60 Minutes: Armstrong Urged Teammates to Dope

Champ continues to deny mounting charges
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted May 23, 2011 2:59 AM CDT
A report by "60 Minutes" says George Hincapie, a longtime member of Lance Armstrong's inner circle, has told federal authorities he saw the seven-time Tour de France winner use performance-enhancing drugs.   (AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski, File)
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(Newser) – Not only did Lance Armstrong use banned substances to boost his cycling performance, he helped lead a systematic doping program on his team by encouraging and promoting the deception along with managers and doctors, according to a 60 Minutes report. "He obviously was the biggest rider in the team and he helped to call the shots," said Tyler Hamilton, a former teammate, in an interview last night that expanded on earlier revelations that he saw Armstrong take EPO. The 60 Minutes investigation also examined a report of what close Armstrong friend and former teammate George Hincapie allegedly told a grand jury investigating doping in cycling, reports the AP.

Among the other 60 Minutes accusations:

  • Team leaders and doctors supervised blood doping and use of performance-enhancing drugs;
  • Doping was going on inside the US Postal team even before Armstrong joined in 1998;
  • Armstrong had a banned blood transfusion in 2000;
  • Cyclists received their performance-enhancing drugs in white lunch bags;
  • Team members were met at the airport, driven to hotels, and told to lie down and give blood that could be transfused back into their bodies at a later date.
Armstrong's lawyer repeated his strong defense of the cycling champ, pointing people to their website, www.facts4lance.com. "Throughout this entire process, CBS has demonstrated a serious lack of journalistic fairness and has elevated sensationalism over responsibility," said Armstrong's lawyer. (Read more Lance Armstrong stories.)

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