Doping Probe Got Earful From Lance's Ex-Teammates

Officials point to lengthy team 'doping conspiracy'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 15, 2012 7:03 AM CDT
In this July 28, 2002, file photo, Lance Armstrong of Austin, Texas, toasts team director Johan Bruyneel with a glass of champagne during the final stage of the Tour de France.   (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)

(Newser) – Lance Armstrong could lose his Tour de France titles—thanks in part to his own former teammates. "More than 10 cyclists," as well as other team employees, spoke "face-to-face" with the US Anti-Doping Agency regarding Armstrong's alleged doping. The agency says it has uncovered a years-long "doping conspiracy" including "team officials, employees, doctors, and elite cyclists," the Wall Street Journal reports.

The USADA hasn't named the witnesses, but one interviewee was George Hincapie, who rode with Armstrong every time he won the Tour de France. Armstrong's lawyer says the cyclist has until next Friday to provide a statement to the USADA; he could also seek a hearing. The case against Armstrong is based on what officials call a "non-analytical positive," one based not on failed drug tests but on a wealth of circumstantial evidence. "It's the only way you can detect or stop sophisticated cheaters," says one official.

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